Orange County, NY – Skoufis Sticks It To Kiryas Joel Block Vote, And Cuomo In Victory Speech


    Orange County, NY – Pulling no punches in his victory speech, Senate-elect Assemblyman James Skoufis took aim squarely at both the Village of Kiryas Joel and Governor Andrew Cuomo, telling a crowd of cheering supporters that they were the only ones he owed anything to, after a race that he categorized as “long and acrimonious.”

    Skoufis, a Democrat, said that he and his family had been personally attacked over the course of the campaign to take over the 39th District Senate seat being vacated by Republican Bill Larkin.

    Kiryas Joel’s main voting bloc had publicly endorsed Skoufis’ opponent, Republican Tom Basile prior to the election, but Skoufis beat out his opponent by nearly 6,000 votes according to unofficial results as reported by the Poughkeepsie Journal (

    “We overcame the Village of Kiryas Joel bloc vote,” said Skoufis amidst thunderous applause. “While we’re at it, we were the only Democratic campaign in a competitive State Senate campaign anywhere in New York that the governor did not make a campaign contribution to. So guess what? When we go to the State Senate in January, we will not owe anything to any of them. Not the governor. Not KJ. Not any of the special interests that operate in Albany. The only, the only people I will happily be indebted to are all of you.”

    Basile conceded in a statement last night, saying he had called his opponent to offer his congratulations.

    “I am proud of the campaign we ran together with the help of so many wonderful people, to drive a conversation about the reforms we need to make our communities more affordable,” said Basile.

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    1. If KJ are his constituents then he has lost all legitimacy by his speech. In a democracy the person voted into office owes as much to those who did NOT vote for him nor contribute to his campaign as he owes to those who did. He sounds close to Obama’s “take revenge” on the alleged “enemies”. It is one thing to carry out a platform. But to point out (especially identifiable) groups and implicitly threaten them for nothing more than backing the opposing political party is the opposite of the meaning of a modern democracy. It smacks of totalitarianism.

      • Really? This man is happy because the leaders of KJ, who wanted him to lose the race, was not successful. KJ tried to bring this man down and have his opponenet win. So because he publicly acknowledges what we all know is true, that the leadership of KJ wanted him to lose, because of that he is an anti-Semite? Because he is unwilling to allow a group of people to change the zoning laws to suit them, in what is a low density, rural area he is an antSemite?
        Your’e like the boy who cried wolf when there was no wolf and eventually the townspeople ignored him when there truly was a wolf. I know this man and have spoken to him. He is no anti-semite. Save that term for people who really deserve it. Baseless accusations of anti-Semitism diminish the shock of the genuine article, water down the meaning of the word and allow real antisemites to hide behind accusations that the word is mere rhetoric. You are doing a disservice to the Jewish people and individuals who have experienced true anti-Semitism.

    2. Notwithstanding pre-election acrimony, once a representative is elected he must represent ALL his constituencies.

      This is something the Democrats do not understand.

    3. I live in the Village of Kiryas Joel and I cast my vote for Basile. In my opinion Skoufis is not antisemitic. He is just a little too young. It’s definitely improper to single out voters based on culture or the area they live.

      Imagine If Basile would say like this: ‘We overcame the special intrest Newburgh voters. So we will not owe anything to any of them.The only, the only people I will happily be indebted to are all of you.”

      And BDW why should not any candidate put a photo on his web page showing Hasidic faces like any other diverse culture? Are we not constituents? Hmmm..


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