NEW YORK — The presidential race is getting all the attention, but there are several other significant elections New Yorkers should follow before casting their ballots.
- See the full list of candidates and races on the ballot
- 2020 NYC Elections: Learn More About the Elections in the City This Year
Here’s what you need to know about some key local races:
11th Congressional District
Areas covered: Staten Island, southern Brooklyn
If Republicans hope to regain control of the U.S. House of Representatives, they may need to take this seat — the only swing Congressional seat in the city — which the party has historically won.
With such high stakes, the race has become an ugly fight stuffed with negative ads. And it’s a snapshot of the national environment: a Republican touting herself as the law-and-order candidate while a Democrat tries to balance the progressive and more moderate parts of his party.
MAX ROSE (D) – Incumbent
- Defeated Republican Rep. Dan Donovan in 2018
- Former veteran of war in Afghanistan
- Voted yes on impeachment of President Donald Trump
- Rejects ties to the “Defund the Police” movement
NICOLE MALLIOTAKIS (R)
- Represents Staten Island and Brooklyn in the 64th Assembly District
- Was Republican nominee for NYC mayor in 2017
- Opposed impeachment of President Trump
- Touts herself as the law-and-order candidate
64th State Assembly District
Areas covered: East Shore of Staten Island, small portion of Bay Ridge in Brooklyn
Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans here, but the district has been represented by a Republican for the last ten years. As a result, the GOP’s candidate has tried to tie himself to President Donald Trump while the Democratic nominee has tried to avoid the topic and run a more moderate campaign.
MICHAEL TANNOUSIS (R)
- Former prosecutor and aide to Staten Island Borough President Jimmy Oddo
- Argues voters need a candidate with a primary focus on public safety
- Criticizes ending cash bail for most cases, raises concerns about witnesses’ identities being compromised in pre-trial procedures
BRANDON PATTERSON (D)
- Former deputy chief of staff for State Sen. Diane Savino on Staten Island
- Has gained union support in the race
- Calls for lower rents for small business owners, no tax increases for local residents
76th State Assembly District
Areas covered: The Upper East Side, Yorkville, Roosevelt Island
The incumbent is on the ballot in this race — but she was actually kicked off the Democratic Party line.
Due to a filing error, Rebecca Seawright lost the ballot position in May after her petitions were challenged in court. Although Seawright has been endorsed by many top party officials, she is facing challenges to her left and right as her opponents hope to capitalize on the incumbent not having the clout of the party name officially.
REBECCA SEAWRIGHT (I, Rise and Unite Party) – Incumbent
- Has represented the district in the Assembly since 2015
- Got knocked off Democratic Party ballot line due to a filing error
- Touts her record, including her sponsorship of a bill requiring 3D mammograms and a Civil Rights amendment
- Has endorsements from top Democrats, including Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
LOU PULIAFITO (R)
- Upper East Side doorman who’s running as a Republican
- Calls for “responsible” criminal justice reform while supporting law enforcement
- Wants more affordable housing and for public housing to be financially sustainable
- Supports reform in Albany, including term limits for lawmakers
PATRICK BOBILIN (I, Blue Wave Party)
- Former vice president of the East River Democratic Club, identifies as a Democratic Socialist
- Arrested in June for allegedly smashing a car window during a Black Lives Matter protest
- Supports universal rent control and universal health care
- Calls for the MTA to be free and sex work to be decriminalized
22nd State Senate District
Areas covered: Southern Brooklyn
Much like the 11th Congressional District, this district went for a Democrat in the wave election of 2018 but has a long Republican history.
Freshman incumbent Andrew Gournades is facing a heated fight from Vito Bruno. Crime and the NYPD are proving to be major issues with a constituency that includes many police officers and firefighters.
ANDREW GOUNARDES (D) – Incumbent
- Has represented parts of southern Brooklyn in the state Senate since 2019 when he defeated longtime lawmaker Marty Golden
- Wants residents in every borough to have a direct vote on the MTA Board to prioritize spending
VITO BRUNO (R)
- Making public safety a central issue, he says votes by Gounardes to end cash bail for certain crimes have made people less safe
- A businessman and former nightclub owner, Bruno admitted in previous interviews to paying off police and providing drugs to celebrities during his nightlife days
Queens Borough President
Although the Democrat in the race has name recognition in a borough that the party does well in, it’s by no means completely blue territory. Queens has conservative strongholds that sometimes elect Republicans.
DONOVAN RICHARDS (D)
- Represents areas that include Far Rockaway and Rosedale in the City Council
- Wants to create a zoning task force to protect affordable housing in Queens
JOANN ARIOLA (R)
- Chair of the Queens County Republican Party, director of Intergovernmental Affairs with the MediSys Health Network
- Centering campaign on public safety, rejects police reform measures
DAO YIN (I)