While last night may not have been everything we hoped it would be, it was still a banner year for Republicans here in New York.
At the top of the ticket, Rob Astorino, Chris Moss, Bob Antonacci and John Cahill made us proud. Rob was an outstanding team captain, and crossed the crucial 40% threshold against an incumbent Governor with a $45 million war chest and four years to prepare for reelection. This was the best team of statewide candidates we've had in recent memory.
With strength at the top of the ticket, Republicans were primed to win other races - and we did.
We have retaken an outright majority in the State Senate. To put that in context, in the ten most Democratic states in the Nation, there are twenty houses of the legislature, and only one is in Republican control: our New York State Senate.
We also had tremendous success in our US House races: every one of our incumbents was reelected, and we picked up three seats to expand our Congressional delegation to nine, the highest point since the 2004 election and up from a low of two following the 2008 election.
Among our new members of Congress are future leaders of our Party: Lee Zeldin is a veteran with a record of cutting taxes who will be the only Republican member of Congress of the Jewish faith. Elise Stefanik is the youngest woman ever elected to Congress, of any party. John Katko is a distinguished Assistant U.S. Attorney who won with nearly 60% of the vote against an incumbent in a very Democratic district in a race many expected to be very close.
We have also expanded our caucus in the State Assembly with a few state and federal races still too close to call.
Without a strong top of the ticket, many of these gains would not have been possible. But our work isn't done - 2015 will be a year of strengthening our party from the bottom to the top and winning local elections to set the stage for 2016.
I'll leave you these words from Rob's speech last night: We've planted a flag, and we'll be back to advance it.
Onward and upward!
Edward F. Cox
Wednesday, November 5, 2014