Opponents of the redistricting map for Nassau County, Long Island, pushed through by Republican Legislators by a 10-9 vote, strictly along party lines, on March 5, have a good case for reversal in court.
Republicans will claim they followed the county charter, held the required public hearings, that the process was "open and transparent" and that the resulting map met the federal and state guidelines for redistricting with the ultimate goal of "one person, one vote."
But that is not true.
Yes, hundreds of people over the roughly eight months process, turned out and gave testimony - almost universally opposed to the map - but the Republican commissioners on the Redistricting Commission and then the Republican legislators did not even pretend to listen.
Yes, the Republicans tweaked the map -, even changing it from a surefire 12-7 Republican majority to an solid 11-8 Republican majority - but that is the point, they clearly gerrymandered the map to maintain a majority that would not be warranted based on the changing demographics that put Democrats (who now represent 38.4% of registered voters), with a larger and growing share of voter registrations over Republicans, who represent 34.5% of registered voters.
If this is familiar, it is the tactic that is being applied by states and localities nationwide where Republicans control the redistricting process after the 2010 census, and is why though Democratic Congressional candidates received 1.1 million more votes than Republicans, the Republicans still maintained a sizeable majority in the House.
With the widely pilloried Republican redistricting map passing the Nassau County Legislature along partisan lines, 10-9, the fight has now moved to petitioning Nassau County Ed Mangano to veto the measure - a highly unlikely move - and possibly to court.
The Republican map that was adopted will see 360,000 Nassau residents - one-fourth of the population - uprooted to new districts with new legislators.
In contrast, the Democratic proposal, which was designed to produce the least amount of changes beyond bringing the population numbers within the required deviation from the 70,502 target, would have shifted only about 20,000 residents.
The coalition map, which best fulfills the goal of compact, contiguous districts that keep together communities of interest, moves 200,000.
Republicans will make the claim that met the requirements of the county charter, and federal and state guidelines They will point to minor "tweaking" of the map - keeping the Great Neck Peninsula intact in District 10 instead of lopping off Kings Point, Saddle Rock and half of the Village of Great Neck to a district across the water, restoring Democratic Legislator Dave Denenberg's house (but not his neighbors on his street) to District 19, and restoring Jericho Gardens to Democratic Legislator Troiano's District 2, but not the 5,000 people on upper Main Street. And they will make the claim that the Republican map has three majority minority districts.
But nothing could be further from the truth.
The resulting districts that were drawn violate the guidelines: the districts are not contiguous, not compact and go out of their way to break up communities of interest.
While the Republicans make a claim for transparency and openness, pointing to the hours of public testimony, the actual plan was done in secret, with no opportunity for anyone to get answers to questions such as who set the "policy" that guided the changes, what were the "policies" that were used in instruction, what the rationale was for setting the boundaries the way they were, whether Voting Records were used. Who made the decision to make those last changes?
The Republican-controlled Legislature only considered one map - the Republican map - and refused to allow consideration of the map produced by the Democrats or the map produced by the nonpartisan Nassau County United Redistricting Coalition, formed of six good-government organizations.
No analysis was provided as to the rationale for the redistricting.
The mapmakers never appeared to answer questions, such as whether voting records were considered in setting the new districts. They put up Francis Moroney to present the map, but when it came to answering questions, he would say he had no knowledge, was not responsible, but would not give any detail about who did give the Republican-paid consultant instructions and defined the "policy".
Raising Questions, No Answers Provided
All during the hearings, members of the public, as well as Democratic legislators, raised questions but never got answers. Presiding Officer Norma Gonsalves only would say, "We are here to listen."
Before the "tweaking," the Republican map was engineered to give them a 12-7 majority (just one shy of a super majority needed to pass bonds without a single Democratic vote); the new map, because Denenberg is restored to his district, would suggest 11-8 majority for Republicans, but Denenberg happens to be a popular Democrat in an otherwise Republican-dominated district.
Still, it is clear that the Republicans will use the "tweaking," as evidence to counter a lawsuit, along with having gone through the motions of a redistricting commission which ostensibly held public hearings. Frank Moroney, who chaired the Commission, and was supposed to be a nonvoting member, did all the talking for the Republicans and continued to be the official "explainer" during the legislature's public hearings.
The Republicans will also point to the fact that their map preserves three minority-majority districts, when the 2003 had two - except that the third district, the newly created 14th, had already evolved as a minority majority district, electing Carrie Solages (now in the 3rd).
It is the way the minority districts are sliced and diced that brought out hundreds of opponents, many for five times.
Joyce Stoll "here for fifth time," she told the Legislature, "because I believe in a strong democracy – governed by the people, which this country is beacon in the world. You've taken the Elmont community, cutting it up, joining with Inwood [in the Five Towns], miles away, jumping over communities. W the people have patiently asked that our community of Elmont be compact and contiguous, It is now not so. My protest might be useless, but I’m sure there will be a judicial redress based on US Constitution and amendment on minority voter rights," she said.
Then, when another man charged that the way the redistricting was accomplished was "racist" that prompted an insulted retort from Kopel.
"This doesn’t serve the 300,000 moved," Mr Broach said. "I’m of a mind that it is racist If you would ask, I doubt anyone would raise their hand to declare they are racist. People think of themselves as fair minded. But racism is where puts a minority people at a disadvantage. This map puts minority people at a disadvantage for 10 years. It allows the political powers to say 'No, we are not racist,' but this document is doing your job."
Kopel recoiled, "Any time you start calling people racist because you disagree, you’ve completely cheapened the entire concept of racism. If everything is racism, then nothing is. The people who sacrificed in the name of eradicating racism deserve better than to have somebody come up and say that the map they disagree with is racist. The map will be tested in the courts, and I am fairly confident, whether or not I agree with some aspects of map, I suspect there will be no problem the map will be held to be constitutionally valid."
Whenever anyone asked what guided the decisions to move lines, they were rebuffed.
Scotty Coates, summarizing her many appearances at the various hearings, said, "Nothing changed, it even got worse. We are not even allowed to ask questions. On Feb. 11 I asked questions, on Feb 25, I asked questions. No answers. Mr. Moroney explained that 'certain groups' of people were moved from District 2. What did he mean by 'certain groups of people'? That’s like the 'You People' syndrome."
Presiding Officer Gonsalves only replied, "That is not a question directed to me and the legislator it is directed to chooses not to answer. This is a listening session."
Coates retorted, "You made your own rules to make us speak, but not ask questions."
Coates, who chairs the New York State NAACP Civic Engagement Committee said, "This is about the 7th or 8th time I've appeared. We shouldn’t have to fight with you to work our way through this maze of democracy the way we have over last three years. Horrible. You are insulting, arrogant, downright disrespectful to the people who have come before you. Now you at the point of not answering questions. Guess what, we will get our answers...
"When we all participate, our democracy is perfected. This is my voice, my power, my vote. And we’ll see you in court."
However, Moroney, who was the only one put up to speak to the map, later said he could not recall using that phrase, nor could he provide any actual analysis of how decisions were made concerning where the lines were drawn, beyond a vague statement that the lines were drawn based on "policy decisions and choices," without saying what the "policy" decisions and choices were, or who actually instructed Skyline Demographers, the firm hired by Republicans.
After the public hearing closed, Democratic Legislators were equally unsuccessful in getting any information about the consultant that prepared the map, the policy decisions that went into making the choices.
The frustration was palpable.
Moroney continued to insist that the Republican map complied with all federal and state requirements, and insisted that the only instruction given to the demographers was to be "blind" to incumbency.
That statement was suspect because in each case, the maps gave advantage to Republicans in pitting Democrats against each other, even with contorted shapes in order to displace Wink and Troiano, with as many as four incumbent Democrats in the early incarnations put into two districts, while only two Republicans were put into the same district (and one of them is expected to retire). Even with the final changes, the redistricting will pit Democrats Wayne Wink Jr. (11th) and Delia DeRiggi-Whitton (18th).
But Moroney could not say who gave to their map-making firm the instructions as to the "policy decisions and choices" they would use, and volunteered under his breath, "no, they were not written down."
Moroney told Troiano, "with respect to drawing district lines, my contact with Skyline ceased. Subsequent, it was presiding officer or Matt Kiernan."
Troiano tried, without success, to get Moroney to explain who actually directed the consultant.
Moroney was a master a deflection, "I can tell you how, but where drawn and how go, that is policy choice by the people in charge of the process itself – the mechanics, limited by census geography. You take a house out here, there, if that is your pleasure- but limited by census geography – that’s the mechanics. Why a district is configured the way it is or isn’t is a policy choice by the 'artists' the cartographers."
Troiano came back, "For the record, that direction did not come from the minority caucus of the legislature. You’ve made the characterization of drawing map like a Jello mold – if move one, that might cause another shape to change, in way might violate voting right act. But we should should strive for a more perfect map – one of the tenets of Voting Rights Act, which applied to Nassau, is that the minority community remain intact and whole – not cracked, not packed- District 2 has been pretty much the way it is today for the past 16 years.
"Except for North Main Street area, population of about 5000, it seems you could have taken one more census district, 1000 people, and kept in LD 2 and not 14 – at least those 1000 people would not see their vote diluted – maybe a second or a third before you overreached – LD 1, is under populated, moved that line a little into 2 and balanced out LD 2 and 1 again and brought more people in North Main Street, in order to maintain a more perfect map – not perfect but an opportunity there to do that. Then these people behind you wouldn’t be alleging voting rights act violations had you taken the time...
"You are very buttoned down, very precise, you give a great deal of thought to everything you do, but in this case, you chose what I call a rush to judgment to disenfranchise that part of Hempstead, putting them in a district they don’t share any demographics with," Troiano told Moroney.
Moroney responded, "I am here to explain what the map is, does, respectfully, not here to redraw the map on the fly from the floor of the legislative chamber and explain why others didn’t do the kind of analysis you did."
Legislator Judy Jacobs probed whether "any experts that drew up the map or others review the changes and what was their response?"
Moroney responded, "I'm not sure if that is q question of privilege or not," - an odd response if this was to be an open, transparent process. "Everybody involved in this process asserted it meets all the standards necessary to muster or stand up to a Voting Rights Act challenge....no, not in writing," he added prompting a chuckle from Matt Kiernan sitting in the audience.
With the exception of Howard Kopel (7th) and Richard J. Niccolello (9th), Republican Legislators sat silent, looking alternatively stone-faced, bored or distracted, or chatting with each other or looking down at computers, during four hours of testimony universally opposed to the map.
Barbara Epstein, representing the Nassau County United Redistricting Coalition, "The proposed map before us today is infected with the disease of naked partisan gerrymandering, produced by process driven by one political party to maintain control of body for next decade – with all the problems, from taxes, budget, racial..;.. demographics – last thing need …
"The symptoms of gerrymandering disease is well documented and until now unaddressed – after nine hours of testimony, only two changes: Denenberg's residence returned to Denenberg's district though still divided between 19 and 5, and Jericho Gardens returned to District 2. Many more symptoms remain. The proposed plan needlessly moves a staggering number of residents – more than 300,000 – into new districts, destroying legislative cores, reducing collective impact of these communities in county politics.
"The plan still divides Hempstead into 3 districts with more than 7600 village residents removed to District 14, with Garden City and extending to Bethpage, in a shape that bears no relation to community interest. We have asked time and time again for reconsideration of the process by which this map was created. That was unaddressed because there no evidence that you have made an effort to work together for the best of the County.
"Moroney testified that two sides were completely separate – hiring their own staff and failing to meet to discuss the problem. How do you expect to collaborate and represent the interest of the entire county when you start from position of division? Now you can’t address [these issues] because you fail to realize or consciously ignore. Start again from the policy imperatives of redistricting and not the objectives of hoarding power for the next 10 years. The changes today are cosmetic and don’t address the core failures [of the Republican map]...Do the right thing and vote no."
Elizabeth Oldendorp, representing Moveon.org, said hundreds of residents have made it abundantly clear that they oppose the map. The people of Nassau want a fair map that maintains communities of interest – we deserve no less." She said that she is gathering another petition - now with 2178 signatures - of people who oppose the map. "I urge the legislators to reject this map, and if you pass it today, I urge Mangano to reject it"
John Moore, of Moveon.org, questioned the company hired by the Republicans to make the map - Skyline Demographers, of Schenectady, but said he was unable to locate them. No representative of the firm appeared before the Legislature to explain how lines were drawn, who gave the "policy" instructions, who told them to change the lines to bring Dave Denenberg's house back into the 19th district or Jericho Gardens back into Troiano's district. No one was able to ask whether voting records were used to determine the lines. [Efforts to locate the company were unsuccessful.]
Jane Thomas, of the League of Women Voters of Nassau County, said, "This new map makes cosmetic changes, but is still partisan and gerrymandered, that packs and cracks districts to the benefit of the majority power. We urge you to vote no, but given the deadline what real options? Here we are."
'Don't Divide Us'
One after another, the speakers - some who have come and testified four and five times - derided the map for what appeared mean-spirited splits unrelated to seeking the stated ideal of redistricting, "one-person, one vote". They pointed to Rockville Centre, Roslyn, the Merricks, Five Towns (now the '1.25 Towns'), the neighborhood around Legislator Denenberg's house (while his house was restored to the 19th district), the north Main Street section of Troiano's district which Troiano pointed out could be restored all or in part without going outside the allowed population deviation.
These prompted statements and sign-waving, "Don't Divide Us."
The map seemed determined to break up established political constituencies.
Roslyn, as Legislator Wayne Wink, Jr pointed out, will be divided among four districts, with no more than 10% in any district (it now represents 40% of the 11th district), effectively diluting their ability to press a legislator on any issue.
Pointing to how the small community of Roslyn Heights is being divided among three districts, creating a shape like "Pac Man, chewing up the neighboring district," Wink decried. "Take a whiff, it’s the smell of fear on part of colleagues on the right – may be me or Whitton – who will be combine d- there was a fear of united Roslyn, and a fear of united Five Towns – the fact that each is being broken into 4, but biggest fear is the fear of the tide and trend of demographics of this county changing – if Mr. [Francis X.] Becker [R-LD 6] would give some respect – what you are smelling is the tide of change taking place in Nassau county – and Republican colleagues trying to keep back that tide at all costs, at the cost of integrity. That’s what we’re about here today."
That prompted a reaction from Vincent T. Muscarella (R-LD 8): "This map keeps 99 of 135 [census] communities together. Your map doesn’t perform as well, would take issue with number and splits your caucus proposed – your map would have split Levittown into three. You may be offended by the choice made with respect to Roslyn, but I am offended by the split to Levittown and others you proposed. It is impossible to draw a map that keeps whole every community and each one of us, legitimately wants to see our communities kept whole – the location of lines are policy choices. Policy choices – your words – from 10 years ago – you don’t like those."
At this point, Presiding Officer Norma L. Gonsalves (R-LD13) accused Wink of "campaigning," and threatened to take a recess.
Wink retorted, "This is not campaign mode, it is survival mode. Control has switched… There is now fear on the Republican side. There is no deodorant that can cover the smell of fear we smell here."
The one legislator who seemed unconcerned that his district was being sliced and diced among four different districts, Howard J Kopel (R-LD7) of the Five Towns.
A man from Lawrence - third generation, he said - pointed to Kopel saying he could not understand why Kopel was so unconcerned that one of the few politically intact Jewish communities was being divided up, their political power diluted.
Kopel, pulled into the discussion, "As much as I would prefer to keep the Five Towns together, I don’t think the Five Towns more worthy than other neighborhoods being recombined. Perhaps people are making more of it than it needs.
Kopel added, "You mentioned the Orthodox vote I take exception. The Orthodox vote is not monolithic, never has been. I never ran as orthodox representative, I ran as representative who happens to be Orthodox. Any one, no matter their denomination, is capable of representing someone else"
"No one is suggesting that Orthodox Jewish vote is monolithic," the man replied.... But lines do matter, representation does matter, being able to have the people you want respond for you – you represent a community and this community is no longer whole. You have the power to change this – I urge you to vote down this map."
Barbara Kaplowitz objected to the "naked partisan gerrymandering, a sham, an insult to democracy. There is no evidence you on the Republican side have listened to ... You have awakened a sleeping giant. You are counting on an apathetic constituency. We are not apathetic. We will work very hard. You will feel the backlash come November.
Henry Boitell, of Rockville Centre, a staple at the hearings, said the Commission process was a sham, and said that the process violates election law on how districts should be formed, because they did not provide any explanation for the reasoning behind drawing the lines the way they were - something that the Democratic Legislators continually requested to no avail.
"You provided with map that can’t figure out what's what – no streets. In effect, the way this has been done, made it almost impossible for average person, and I suspect most of you, to know what’s going on (big applause) – what you have meets and bounds that runs for … pages – then you give us a map – in age of technology – we get junk.
"Just as Hempstead is inappropriately divided, so too Rockville Centre is divided into 3 parts – total population of Rockville Centre is only 25,000 – you say the proper average legislative district is 70,000 – Rockville Centre could easily fit into one election district – Election law and the policy of the State – which you are bound by – say you must make an effort to keep political subdivisions whole for voting. So how can it be that Rockville Centre, with only 25,000 residents total, is divided into 3. There is no one explanation from the commission or legislature as to why we are divided."
He objected to the way no one has had any opportunity to see or comment on the maps as they were revised and presented without any detail or background - essentially in the dark of night - right before a hearing, and then voted on without taking into consideration any of the public testimony, and without any consideration of any alternate map, such as the Democrats and the Coalition proposed.
"This is not the way to run a county," he declared, to big applause and chants of "Don't Divide Us."
Anthony Cacioppo of New Hyde Park. should be drawing map that insures representation, not weaken it. Instead of putting political advantage ahead of public good, Nassau County residents deserve fair and equal representation. In this map, districts are manipulated by political gain by carving up absurdly shaped districts, as everyone has testified. I urge you legislators to reject this proposed map and employ an nonpartisan panel to oversee restricting."
Dolores Malloy making her fifth appearance, described herself as "a 66 year old African member woman in my skin. Why do we keep coming and coming? I was born in Virginia, the birthplace of the Confederacy. This process of redistricting and gerrymandering is like rubbing salt on a wound – we've been down this road – Sunday marked over 45 years of voting rights – voting wasn’t always afforded to a lot of people in my ethnic group. The right to vote was paid for with high price – people and children marched, beaten, died, endured poll taxes, voter registration and now gerrymandering – a backdoor approach to diluting our right to vote – to disenfranchise us. Almost 50 years later, we are having to fight and defend something granted to us in the Constitution – a right, not a privilege. No crosses, no dogs, no people standing on steps in white sheets, but Jim Crow, Esquire, now has a three-piece suit – the process you are trying to push through after two years of Nassau County residents saying we don’t want this, the high court saying you couldn’t do it, you will go to court to fight a case you said you can’t afford – you spent $500K to make map – We will not sit idly by. You continue to put salt on the wound, but we are aware, we won’t go away."
Legislator Troiano took up this issue, saying, "No one suggesting you are racist, that you would deny a job or college, but like Vice President Biden, there is an obligation on all of us as leaders to do more than remain silent, when we see something wrong to right it (applause). We are here as elected representatives- only comment you took was to take personal assault, but this map is an assault.
"We have heard a lot about Jello – that to move one piece causes disjointing in another. That is not case with Hempstead – 5000 people in Hempstead were lifted up and put into Garden City, Carle Place, Old Westbury, Hicksville, Bethpage. It is very difficult for me and those people out there to understand the demographic commonalities – would have been easy to fix without destroying the Jello mold – district 14, the new 14 – has an overabundance of people – district 2 is under the ideal limit. It would be simple to take that north section of Main Street and put back into LD 2 without disenfranchising that part of Hempstead and cutting into 3 legislative districts.
Troiano turned to Kopel, who some considered a possible swing vote, saying, "This is the time to not remain silent, in face of wrong, I’ll respect you to stand up and say you are right – being put into district they don’t belong – racial mix, economic, educational mix not the same- don’t belong – left to wonder and they are left to wonder why, and why you remain silent. (big applause)
Kopel responded, "I don’t believe the coming lawsuit will determine whether or not the map is racially impermissible. We will find out – if passes, you are simply wrong - it won’t be a value judgment, it will be a legal judgment."
Troiano answered, "The real mistake is to hide behind legalism. That’s what people in the South did with the poll tax. I ask you not to lead with head but your heart. You point to the fact that 99 out of 135 census districts are not changed– but you could have taken three more of census districts moved to Garden City and retained into #2 – 99 to 102 would not have impacted the Jello mold and we wouldn’t have the argument. The Voting rRights Act isn’t to promote integration, it’s intended to make sure minorities have a vote that counts."
Instead of moving back all 5000 people that the Republican map moves out of District 2, he said, the mapmakers could have moved back the census districts one by one to see how many could be moved before going outside the permitted deviation in population.
But at the end, there was a recognition that the dice was cast, even back in 2011, when a redistricting map was concocted in a secret room by paid Republican operatives. Then, as now, the Democrats were not allowed to know who prepared the map, what they were paid, or how they were instructed.
Kopel, who was regarded as a possible swing vote because the Five Towns district he represents were going to be so violently slashed, took away all the suspense when he voted first, saying in a quiet voice, "I am voting for it reluctantly – make clear – not for reasons – don’t believe racism involve d- don’t believe five towns will go flying apart as a result of the vote, simply that feel badly that a lot of the people who I worked very hard to represent will be in another district – will continue to work with my friends on both sides of the line, and legislatures."
Troiano congratulated the people who turned out time after time, taking off work, taking away time from families, saying, "I'm not sure that after multi months, multi hearings, hours of testimony, there’s much left that hasn’t been said but we want to congratulate you for coming out, beside fact you woke up and knew was a fait accompli – because of process, March 5, the county charter requires us to vote today, so no matter what you said today, and many of you made compelling arguments – and my colleagues hear you – we are simply up against the wall and a vote has to be taken today. But it didn’t have to be this way.
Legislator Carrie Solages (D-3rd) also commended those who turned out: "The patriotism shown was courageous, inspirational – thanks to those who educate neighbors as to the great injustice that is happening today I have great concerns for the map presented by Moroney – it violates equal protection clause truly to have a district go from one shape – talk about Jello it is the stencil of theLochness Monster – that is suspect."
Judi Bosworth (D-10th) criticized the process, noting that the Legislature was never given the opportunity to consider any other map than the Republican map - not the map produced by the Democrats or the coalition map.
Wink was most acerbic of all, saying, "I heard a lot of crocodile tears, nebulous unspecified vague concerns about the map from colleagues on other side- nothing specific, nothing involving real details and nothing that would have dissuaded them from voting...So here we are today looking at the reality that most of us knew was coming, no matter what the crocodile tears, we knew what the outcome would be from the beginning. Let’s have at it. I vote no."
David Denenberg commented before casting his vote, "It is clear this has been a desperate attempt to carve 12 Republican districts in a county that is no longer Republican – result is a dilution of the minority community, the result is a district 14 like a snake with its head disjointed, Five Towns which have become 1.25 towns, in Roslyn I defy anyone to know who their legislator will be, and finally my home community of Merrick literally had sliver – a finger, a knuckle - taken out just to take me out – while thankfully I was put back in, none of my neighbors were put back in and that little area could have been put back in without any change. It is absolutely wrong on 'one-man-one vote' reasons , on reasons not important just to the Five Towns and Merrick."
Republican Legislator Rose Walker (R-LD17), finally lifting her head up for the first time in all the hearings, uttered her first words, "We all have to learn to work together. I vote yes."
Most cynically of all was Denise Ford's comment - another legislator who was the White Hope for a swing vote. "By voting no," she said, "the 2011 map will go into effect for this election cycle. Regardless how many pieces chopped up, all of us work together, that will continue." Then she said she would take up Legislator Judy Jacobs' initiative to "start working together on the next map in 10 years."
Gonsalves, casting the final and deciding vote, spoke to those who are "disappointed with the vote that is being taken today. I believe you have done your part in the democratic process – great deal of stress involved – items such as this, items of such importance, that will affect us for possibly 10 years – changes could be made along the way to change the process. Right now we have a map that will be voted in a partisan way. All of us took a look at this map – from the very beginning, areas outside Jericho Gardens, district 19, Great Neck, Plainview, Glen Cove, barrier islands – changes were made to the map. It follows the law, makes me happy, I vote yes."
"The Republican map approved by the legislature in a 10-9 partisan vote is, plainly and simply, a power grab," commented Jay Jacobs, chair of the Nassau County Democrats "With enrollment trending heavily toward the Democrats, Nassau Republicans have pulled out all of the stops in an attempt to skew future election results and hold on to their power. In the process, they have broken up communities, diluted the voting impact of important constituent groups and created a new map that creates the worst of Gerrymandered district lines.
"Nassau County's Charter calls for a bipartisan process to create a new map every ten years. The Republicans made a sham of the process. There was NO dialogue with the Democrats and they responded to hours of negative testimony by making virtually no changes to their plan. It demonstrates the arrogance of their leadership.
"We will pursue all appropriate available legal options. Best yet: we will endeavor to beat them and their new district lines at the ballot box in November."
Also, attorney Fred Brewington of Hempstead has indicated his office would launch a lawsuit over possible Constitutional and Voting Rights Act issues.
Karen Rubin, Long Island Populist Examiner
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