Republican David Storobin is currently ahead in the recount of last Tuesday’s special election in Brooklyn, and at least some Democrats see a long-term advantage if his lead holds after all of the absentee ballots are counted later this week.
The advantage, the argument goes, is that due to redistricting, the district Mr. Storobin campaigned for is dismantled, and the new district Mr. Storobin has vowed to seek reelection in does not contain his base in the Russian community. Instead, the new district contains a very heavy Orthodox Jewish population, which would open the opportunity for Democrats to run a conservative, Orthodox Jewish candidate against him.
“[W]ithout Russians in the future Super Jewish district he would not be able to beat Jewish Orthodox Democrat,” Democratic Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny explained on his Facebook wall. “So as a result of that in November ( 2012 general elections ) instead of gaining a seat by electing Jewish Orthodox Republican, Senate Republicans will lose a seat in the Senate.”
Mr. Storobin performed strongly in Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods in last Tuesday’s election, and, during the campaign, he touted his roots in Boro Park and Midwood, which will become the core of the new district, so he likely sees his electoral prospects differently than Mr. Brook-Krasny.
Regardless, Democratic and Republican plans could still be affected by the courts. While the redistricting lines for the State Senate have already been signed into law, there’s at least one pending lawsuit that still has the potential to substantially shake things up and send the map back to the drawing board, perhaps enabling the Senate Republicans to draw a district more favorable to Mr. Storobin, should they desire.
Meanwhile, if Mr. Storobin’s current Democratic opponent, Lew Fidler, pulls out a victory from last week’s vote, his eventual options are limited. Mr. Fidler got trounced in the district’s Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods, so any plan to seek reelection to the State Senate would seem to necessarily involve challenging neighboring GOP State Senator Marty Golden instead.