Is the Blue Wave Crashing on The Shores of Long Island?

Lubia Grechen Shirley

Long Island, NY has been a Republican stronghold ever since hoards of New York City ex-pats moved there and forgot their working class immigrant roots, mostly. New York’s 2nd Congressional District, which runs along the South Shore of Long Island including southwestern Suffolk County and a small portion of southeastern Nassau County, is held by 13-term Republican Rep. Peter King. If you aren’t familiar with Representative King, he’s an extremist who votes with Trump & the hard-right fringes of the GOP nearly 90% of the time. He usually runs on a platform of anti-taxation, which has traditionally gone over well with voters. Long Island property taxes are among the highest in the nation. The fact that King’s own party is responsible for effectively raising taxes by axing the state and local tax deduction has not been lost on his constituents. This compounds the fact that Long Island is already showing signs of being ready for change. Last fall Democrats won victories in the Nassau County Executive and Hempstead Town Supervisor races. And King’s District is now seen by Democrats as vulnerable enough to flip in the 2018 midterm election.

King’s Democratic challenger is Lubia Grechen Shirley. Among other things, she is the founder of a grassroots group called New York’s 2nd District Democrats. The group was meant mostly to organize Dems alarmed by Donald Trump’s policies — but it wound up attracting independents and even Republicans who want new leadership in the district. A Democratic group attracting Republicans? Enter blue.

Last year Nassau county residents registered to vote at a rate of two to one in favor of Democrats, according to the county’s Board of Elections. This is reportedly due to the influx of young people, immigrants and minorities to the area; a reflection of what, according to the New York Times, is mirroring a liberal swing is a number of suburbs across the nation. Will the blue seep turn into a blue wave by November 2018? Time will tell. By 2020? Signs point to yes.

For a hilarious NSFW introduction to the true essence of Rep. Peter King listen to this “call” between Jimmy Dore, comedian and host of the Jimmy Dore Show on Pacifica, and “Rep. King”: Starting at 1 min: