Main KJ voting bloc backs Basile in Senate race

Kiryas Joel leaders are supporting Republican state Senate candidate Tom Basile in today’s election for the 39th Senate District seat, steering several thousand votes from the Hasidic village’s main voting bloc to Basile.

The Anash political group’s endorsement of Basile and the blizzard of votes that guarantees him will be partially offset by the village’s smaller faction endorsing Assemblyman James Skoufis, the Democratic candidate for the Senate seat Bill Larkin is vacating. As an illustration of the potential impact of that split from the 2016 election, Anash endorsed Democratic Assembly candidate Aron Wieder and earned him 4,598 votes on election day, and the Kiryas Joel Alliance supported Republican Assemblyman Karl Brabenec and got him 1,491 votes – a 3,107 net gain for Wieder.

Here is a section of the sample ballot Anash distributed to voters outside Kiryas Joel’s polling stations with the endorsed candidates highlighted:
















Votes are being cast for the first time today as the Town of Palm Tree, the new town that will come into existence in January to split off Kiryas Joel from the Town of Monroe. Palm Tree has a total of 10,157 voters.

Both Anash and the KJ Alliance endorsed Brabenec today in his race against Democratic challenger Scott Martens for the 98th Assembly District seat. Both factions also supported all of the Democrats running for statewide office – Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, Attorney General Letitia James and U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Anash supported Democratic Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney in his race against Republican challenger Jim O’Donnell; the Alliance made no endorsement in that race.

Here’s a section of the Alliance sample ballot:

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