Democrat’s Retirement Sets up Top Pickup Opportunity

Democrat’s Retirement Sets up Top Pickup Opportunity

Next year will be ’s last in Congress.

Earlier today, the Long Island congressman announced his campaign for governor. With his announcement, Suozzi has become the fourth Democrat to enter the governor’s race.

Gov. , Attorney General Letitia James and City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams have already announced their candidacies.

Suozzi represents a swing district that Republicans have long had in their sights.

As POLITICO reports:

“The far right and the far left have gone too far, and they’re stopping us from getting things done,” Suozzi said in a campaign launch video.

Even before today’s news, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) had ID’d Suozzi as one of the most vulnerable Democrats heading into 2022.

SEE ALSO: Republicans Jump to Historic Lead in Generic Congressional Ballot

His entrance into the race will also have down-ballot effects as New York lawmakers prepare to enter the homestretch of the redistricting process. Long Island has about four seats in the House, a number which is poised to fall to 3.76. That means that at least one of the districts represented by Suozzi or Rep. Kathleen Rice will need to stretch further into Queens than it does now.

There’s a (Possible) Hitch…

So the million dollar question is what Suozzi’s district will look like after redistricting is complete. Although New York has an independent redistricting commission, Gov. Hochul signed a bill last week that’d let the New York State Assembly draw the new state legislative and congressional lines if the commission fails to approve a map by Jan. 15.

If that happens, Democrats in Albany will have complete control of the process.

Democrats are well-positioned to dominate the mapmaking process in New York. And the reduction of one incumbent to protect means they could have more flexibility in making an adjustment like this.

The commission’s “Names” draft plan would keep Suozzi’s district highly competitive. Its other plan, named “Letters,” would make it Republican-leaning.

SEE ALSO: The Legislative Battles That Could Decide Control of Congress

Prior to his 2016 election to the U.S. House of Representatives, Suozzi was the County Executive of Nassau, New York. In 2006, he unsuccessfully ran for governor.

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