John Jay LaValle has been Suffolk County Republican Party Chairman since September 2009. The former Town of Brookhaven Supervisor was born in Smithtown and graduated from Touro Law School. He was kind enough to take time out to grant Dan’s Papers this exclusive interview on his vision of the 2011 election in Suffolk County.
LaValle explained why it is important for the Republicans to win the Suffolk County Executive race in 2011 saying, “Suffolk County is in dire need of responsible leadership, and Angie Carpenter is the only candidate in a position to provide that leadership. Even a cursory understanding of Steve Bellone’s record in the Town of Babylon makes that point for me. Under Mr. Bellone, Babylon has the highest taxation rate in Suffolk; Babylon has the highest unemployment in Suffolk; Babylon has the highest foreclosure rate in Suffolk. Suffolk County simply cannot afford the type of leadership that Steve Bellone has provided to Babylon.”
I asked him how much money his party will need to raise in order to win the County Executive election. LaValle replied, “Obviously we have and will continue to raise as much money as possible, but realistically we will need between half and three quarters of a million dollars to win the CE race.”
When I mentioned that Bellone and the Democrats plan on raising twice as much ($3.2 million) he said, “Not even $10 million is enough for Steve Bellone and the Democrats to win from the damage they have done to Suffolk County government.”
When asked why Carpenter is a strong candidate, LaValle said, “Angie has had an exemplary career in Suffolk County government. First as a legislator and Deputy Presiding Officer, then as the County Treasurer. Angie understands how county government works, both for the better and worse. She is uniquely qualified to identify the deficiencies and work with the Legislature to correct them, and conversely, she is uniquely capable to identify what is working and apply those lessons to all aspects of county government.”
LaValle, who is the metaphorical quarterback of the GOP party, listed the candidates the Suffolk Republican Committee are supporting for countywide office, and about his predictions. His response: “All of the Republican candidates for the Suffolk County Legislature and our candidate for Suffolk County Executive are being supported by my office. My prediction is simple: all of our candidates will run spirited, effective races. On November 8 the Suffolk County Executive position, as well as control of the Legislature, will be under Republican leadership. In particular, Cornelius Kelly (2nd), Anthony Moncayo (5th), Karen Wilutis (6th), John Giannott (7th), Anthony Musumeci (8th), Deborah Poulos (16th), Dennis Garetano (17th) and Liz Black (18th) are legislative races to watch.”
When I mentioned there are 303,698 registered Republicans and 295,134 registered Democrats—with 300,000+ others (Independents)—he corrected me, saying the registered 21,000 Conservatives usually vote Republican but the Liberal Party, Green Party and those parties vote Democratic. It will come down to the 275,000 Independents and he believes the trend in the country is “…Conservative this election cycle. Our base is motivated and their [the Democrats] base is embarrassed and will be suppressed.”