Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-Glen Cove), the former Nassau County executive and mayor of Glen Cove, is seeking a second term in the House of Representatives. Republican challenger Dan DeBono, a former Navy SEAL, is looking for a political upset in an election expected to see strong Democratic turnout.
Suozzi has campaigned as a legislator who can break through the partisan gridlock to get things done. He touted his membership in the Problem Solvers Caucus — a group of 24 Democrats and 24 Republicans — and said the group was establishing common ground on issues such as infrastructure, gun control and immigration.
While concrete legislation has been hard to come by for the Problem Solvers Caucus, Suozzi said the group has built trust amongst the two parties in an increasingly partisan political environment. But he said he had concrete accomplishments of his own, noting that he secured funding to clean up a chemical plume in Bethpage, drew attention to the Northport VA, and reduced helicopter traffic over Queens.
DeBono is not impressed. Although he believes the economy has made great strides under President Donald Trump, he said that Long Island families — particularly in the middle class — have been left behind. While saying he favored tax cuts, he said that Trump’s tax cut that limited deductions for state and local taxes was “flawed.”
To create better jobs, DeBono said he would seek stricter enforcement of anti-trust laws. He said the domination of a small handful of corporations in each industry had hurt competition and wage growth. He proposed breaking up these companies to increase the demand for labor, along with better trade deals, deregulation and helping small businesses as ways to improve the economy.
On national issues, Suozzi said he would be a check on Trump’s power and support the Mueller investigation, while DeBono called the inquiry a “witch hunt” that needed to end. Suozzi supported protection for abortion rights while DeBono said he was “pro-life” but also that the issue should be left to the states.
On immigration, DeBono said that some illegal immigrants could stay in the United States if they had already been here for a set amount of time, but would not be automatically granted citizenship. Suozzi supports citizenship for DACA recipients. Both condemned the separation of migrant children from their parents.