Former Democrat Rep. Tom Suozzi last Saturday officially announced that he was running in the special election in New York’s 3rd District to replace ousted Rep. George Santos who was expelled from Congress on December 1, CNN reported.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced on December 5 that the special election would take place on February 13, 2024. Under the state’s election rules, county party chairs nominate the candidate to run in a special election.
On December 7, the Nassau County and Queens County Democrat Party chairs Jay Jacobs and Gregory Meeks announced that they had nominated Suozzi, who previously served in the House for their counties, to run in the special election.
In a joint statement, the party chairmen said Suozzi has a record of fighting for the constituents to “safeguard our suburban way of life” and has always advocated for “sensible solutions.”
Suozzi’s nomination was not surprising as he had already filed to challenge George Santos in the 2024 election before Santos announced he wouldn’t seek a second term. Santos ran to unseat Suozzi in 2020 but lost by double digits.
In his campaign announcement on Saturday, Suozzi said his campaign would focus on the high cost of living, the migrant crisis, climate change, and the wars in Ukraine and Israel.
Addressing a small crowd that gathered in the backyard of a home in Long Island, Suozzi called for an end to “finger-pointing” and partisanship in American politics, saying he would work with anyone in Congress willing to “solve the problems that people face.”
The race in NY-03 will take on added significance with the Republican Party’s slim majority becoming even smaller in January now that former Speaker Kevin McCarthy has announced that he will resign at the end of the month.
Currently, the Cook Political Report has NY-03’s special election race rated as a toss-up.
The Republican party leaders of Nassau and Queens Counties on Thursday announced that they have nominated former IDF paratrooper Mazi Melesa Pilip to challenge Suozzi in the February 13 special election.