Updated 03/17/2010 10:26 AM
Peralta Wins State Senate Seat In Queens Special Election
Following are returns for Tuesday's special election in the State Senate's 13th district in Queens, following the closing of polls at 9 p.m. Refresh your browser for updated numbers.
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Assemblyman Jose Peralta came out the winner following Tuesday's special election for the 13th State Senate District.
With 100 percent of precincts reporting, Peralta garnered nearly 66 percent of the vote.
"Tonight we put an end to dysfunction, to divisiveness, to disappointment. Our nightmare is over. A new day has begun," said Peralta during his victory speech.
Peralta will now represent parts of Jackson Heights, East Elmhurst and Corona.
He is expected to be sworn in lWednesday.
It was a heated race between Peralta and his main challenger, former State Senator Hiram Monserrate who ran as an Independent hoping to win back his old seat.
Monserrate, who came away with 27 percent of the votes, was expelled from the senate last month following a misdemeanor assault conviction for dragging his girlfriend.
During his concession speech, the embattled politician thanked his supporters and acknowledged it was an uphill battle.
"We took on the entire political establishment of the State of New York; every single labor union, hundreds and hundreds of thousands of dollars with an army of hard working average New Yorkers from the great borough of Queens," Monserrate said. "It is indisputable that from the very beginning, this was a battle of Goliath proportions against us."
At home in his district, many said they wanted all the problems of Monserrate behind them, and they are looking towards the future. That sentiment was echoed by local Democratic leaders, as well.
“I believe that an elected official is not only for legislation, he also has to be a role model,” said supporter Aneiry Batista. “Jose has shown leadership and ethics.”
“We want you to do something for tenants’ rights. We want you to do something for equal rights,” said State Senate President Pro Tem Malcolm Smith. “We want you to do something for those who need jobs in the state of New York and we want to send someone to Albany who understands that women’s rights and violence against women will not stand in this state.”
Lost in the shuffle was Republican Robert Beltrani, who received just over seven percent of the votes Tuesday. An Administrative Law Judge, Beltrani billed himself as a political outsider who was not caught up in the dysfunction of Albany.