BROOKLYN (VINnews) — In a stunning upset, Joe Lentol, an assemblyman of 46 years, has been defeated in the latest Democratic primary for the 50th district that takes in Greenpoint and Williamsburg. He lost to Emily Gallagher, a community activist.
Lentol conceded with a statement Wednesday morning, saying “It’s decided: The voters in the 50th Assembly District voted for change. It’s been a great honor to represent the people of North Brooklyn in the Assembly. I’m proud of my years of service, delivering important legislation and always attending to constituents’ needs.”
“My successor will be busy as the new Assembly Member.” Lentol continued. “I wish her well as she faces the enormous challenges ahead.”
Gallagher tweeted her confidence in her victory by Tuesday evening, saying “Fresh numbers from the scanners, with all the usual caveats. With the in-person vote included, we’re now ahead by 265. And our lead is growing.”
Fresh numbers from the scanners, with all the usual caveats.
With the in-person vote include, we're now ahead by 265. And our lead is growing. pic.twitter.com/qgaMksXvPE
— Emily Gallagher for Assembly (@em4assembly) July 21, 2020
Later that night, insiders from the Board of Elections verified that Gallagher was indeed in the lead.
Lentol initially held a 1,763 vote lead over Gallagher, following an in-person machine count on June 23, which was largely due to the loyal support of the Orthodox Jewish community of Williamsburg who have backed Lentol for years.
But it was evident from the informal count shared by Gallagher on Tuesday that she now led by an estimated 2,020 votes from mail-in ballots.
“The community and the district will still benefit of Assemblyman Lentol’s @assemblymanjoe service till January and will always remain indebted to his 48 years of service,” wrote Williamsburg News on Twitter.
The community and the district will still benefit of Assemblyman Lentol's @assemblymanjoe service till January and will always remain indebted to his 48 years of service.
— WILLIAMSBURG NEWS (@WMSBG) July 21, 2020