This Week in New York – 2018 Midterm Election Results, Next Week's City Council Hearings  

The New York Note

November 9, 2018
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2018 Midterm Election Results

On Tuesday, voters throughout the United States cast their ballots in the 2018 Midterm Elections. Please see below for our recap of the outcomes from New York on the local, state and federal level:


In New York City, three ballot questions were voted on and all passed by large margins. These changes to the City Charter will include the following:

  • Beginning in 2021 and 2022, the maximum donation to City candidates for every office will decrease by 60-65%; the rate for matching funds will increase from 6-1 to 8-1; the public funds cap will be increased

  • A new Civic Engagement Commission will be created to establish a citywide participatory budgeting program; partner with CBOs; improve language services at poll sites; promote access to city services and information

  • Community Board Members will be limited to four consecutive two-year terms; applications and nominations will be more transparent; the Civic Engagement Commission will provide assistance and training to Community Boards


The democratic state-wide ticket had a resounding victory with Governor Andrew Cuomo, Attorney General-Elect Letitia "Tish" James, and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli all receiving at least 60% of the vote.The New York State Senate will have a strong democratic majority for the first time in a decade with at least 8 seats flipping control. The current expected tally will be 40 Democrats (including Simcha Felder) and 23 Republicans. As a result, Andrea Stewart-Cousins is expected to become the first female Majority Leader of the State Senate in New York's history. This will establish a "trifecta" for Democrats with solid control of the Executive, Senate, and Assembly. Here are the flips:

  • Democrat Kevin Thomas defeated 14-term incumbent Kemp Hannon

  • Democrat James Gaughran defeated 11-term incumbent Carl Marcellino

  • Democrat Monica Martinez defeated 2-term incumbent Thomas Croci

  • Democrat Peter Harckham defeated 2-term incumbent Terrance Murphy

  • Democrat Anna Kaplan defeated 1-term incumbent Elaine Phillips

  • Democrat Andrew Gounardes is expected to defeat 8-term incumbent Martin Golden

  • Democrat James Skoufis defeated Tom Basile in a formerly republican-held open seat

  • Democrat Jen Metzger defeated Ann Rabbitt in a formerly republican-held open seat

  • Republican Sue Serino appears to have held off challenger Karen Smythe but Smythe has not yet conceded

These new Senators were elected alongside a group of democratic primary challengers who also won their general election races last night, including Zellnor Myrie, Robert Jackson, Alessandra Biaggi, John Lui, Jessica Ramos, Julia Salazar, and Rachel May. All in all there will likely be 15 new State Senators sworn in this January.

The New York State Assembly will continue to have a Democratic majority with 107 of the Assembly's 150 seats won by Democrats in yesterday's election.


In a slate of competitive House races, democrats flipped at least two seats with Max Rose defeating Dan Donovan to represent District 11 and Antonio Delgado defeating John Faso to represent District 19. Two races are still in limbo with democrat Anthony Brindisi declaring victory over Claudia Tenney in District 22 as well as republican Chris Collins declaring victory over Nate McMurray in District 27 but both challengers are now asking for more votes to be counted. Republican incumbents John Katko, Lee Zeldin, and Pete King held off democratic challengers in relatively close races.


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Next Week's City Council Hearings


Next week, the New York City Council will meet to discuss several topics including, an oversight hearing on "Reentry Programs for Formerly Incarcerated Youth" in the Committee on Juvenile Justice and the exploring the creation of an Office of Data Analytics in the Committee on Technology. The Committee on Housing and Buildings will discuss the implementation of a pilot program in East New York to give landlords incentives to bring basement apartments up to fire and safety code in an effort to create more affordable housing in the area. The full council will meet on Wednesday to approve and introduce legislation at a stated meeting. For a complete listing of next week's council hearings, please click here.



Rose Christ

Co-Chair, New York Practice, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

(212) 883-2248

Katie Schwab

Managing Director, Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies

(212) 883-4913

Related Practices

Please contact Katie Schwab or Rose Christ of Cozen O'Connor Public Strategies with any questions you may have regarding this note or if you’re interested in ways to engage on these issues.