Making Headlines!

With two weeks to go until pivotal local elections in both Nassau and Suffolk Counties, we're making waves – and headlines. Today Newsday highlights our first-of-its-kind candidate forum, showcasing the transformative power of civic engagement in working class Latino, African-American, and immigrant communities. Click through for the article in full.

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Wall Street Journal on Nassau

Parties Vie for New Nassau

Edward Mangano, Thomas Suozzi Face Off for County Executive

By Will James

Political analysts and party officials say they expect the race for Nassau County executive to test the power of the growing black, Hispanic and Asian communities transforming suburban Long Island.

Republican County Executive Edward Mangano is running for re-election against his predecessor, Thomas Suozzi, a Democrat who had won two terms to the office. Four years ago, Mr. Mangano unseated Mr. Suozzi by fewer than 400 votes.

This year, Democrats are working to turn out new minority voters to blunt the power of the county’s Republican machine. “Taking advantage of the demographic changes is the greatest challenge for the Suozzi campaign, and overcoming them is the greatest for Mangano,” said Lawrence Levy, executive dean of the National Center for Suburban Studies at Hofstra University.

A growing Caribbean population helped fuel a 17% increase in Nassau’s voting-age black population between 2000 and 2010, according to the Nassau County United Redistricting Coalition, a group that advocated for minorities in the county’s legislative-redistricting process. The Hispanic voting-age population grew 49% over that period, driven by Salvadoran and Guatemalan immigrants, according to the analysis. And the Asian voting-age population surged 68%, as South Asians settled in North Shore communities.

“We’re not in Levittown anymore,” said Daniel Altschuler, the coordinator of the Long Island Civic Engagement Table, a nonpartisan group trying to involve working-class minorities in politics. “People have this conception of Nassau County as this post-World War II, mostly-white suburb,” but demographics no longer bear that out, he said.

Nonwhite residents accounted for all the growth in Nassau between 2000 and 2010. The county remains mostly white, but the voting-age white population fell by 9% over that period.

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¡Victoria! Nassau County speaks our language!

We have big news! Yesterday, following months of organizing by the Long Island Civic Engagement Table (LICET) and its allies, County Executive Ed Mangano signed the second of two executive orders ensuring free translation and interpretation to limited-English proficient (LEP) residents of Nassau County in their interactions with county agencies. 

This is an important civil rights victory for Nassau County, and we cheer this new policy! 

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Peter King for President?

Last week, an unexpected news story made the rounds: Seaford's own Rep. Peter King, U.S. congressperson for a district that now stretches from Massapequa to Brentwood and Central Islip, is considering a run for President in 2016.

Today in Newsday, our partner Hector Figueroa, president of SEIU Local 32BJ, offers some helpful advice to the Congressman: support for common sense immigration reform will be essential if he wants to show that he's serious about the future of his constituents, his party, and this country. Read on—

Figueroa: Support for immigration bill would help Peter King in '16

Peter King at our community forum in BrentwoodIf Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) is truly considering a presidential run in 2016, as he indicated last week, his first national test may be the immigration bill currently before the House of Representatives.

The Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill last month that included an attainable, earned path to citizenship; family reunification measures; strong worker protections; and increased border security measures. The bill is a model of bipartisan compromise that stood the test of scrutiny, heated debate and challenging amendments. But passage is far from certain in the House. So far, the House leadership has not brought the bill to the floor, despite support for comprehensive reform from moderate Republicans and Democrats…

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