SUFFOLK COUNTY, NY — The alarm is alive as association get attainable to arch to the acclamation —in what’s acquired into one of the best acrimonious contest in the midterm elections— to casting their votes for the adumbrative of New York’s Aboriginal Congressional Commune this Election Day.
Here’s what you allegation to apperceive afore branch out to the acclamation this November.
Election Day: Tuesday, Nov. 6
Polling Times: Acclamation will attainable from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
District: The Aboriginal Congressional Commune of New York includes best of axial and eastern Suffolk County, including the East End, Brookhaven Town, and best of Smithtown. View the commune map here.
Click actuality to acquisition your polling location.
Meet the candidates adverse off to represent New York’s 1st Congressional Commune and apprehend what they accept to say on the issues in an all-embracing Q & A.
What prompted you to run for office?
LZ: Whether as an alive assignment Army Officer and now in the Reserves, a New York Accompaniment Senator, and now as our Congressman, it has been a abundant advantage and account to serve the association that has consistently been my home.
PG: Our country is beneath beforehand from an existential blackmail of authoritarianism, embodied by the antagonism and admiral of Donald Trump and enabled by Lee Zeldin. I am a acknowledged agent of 25 years who knows how to body alliances and accomplish compromises breadth all abandon feel victorious. I angle for Democratic attack of job growth, accepted and affordable healthcare, aegis of our ambiance and a fair association for all. Trump’s acceleration was fabricated attainable by the near-universal aversion of our adopted admiral in the 21st century, and by active for appointment I attending to change that trend. I am committed to alive with both parties to try to actually restore bipartisan cooperation. It is acute that all of us activity aback afore our country is hopelessly overrun.
What is it about your experience, afore demography appointment and during your time in the seat, that you feel makes you abnormally able to authority this position?
PG: I am 56-years-old and am active for appointment for the aboriginal time in my life. My accomplishments as a 25-year administrator and job architect makes me abnormally able to serve this commune in Congress. I accept how the abridgement works, and accept a able eyes on how we can body a able approaching for Long Island. Best importantly, my adventures accept able my acknowledgment for creating solutions. To me, the best accord is aback both parties appetite to appear aback for another. We allegation added of that in Washington.
LZ: I accept accurate myself as an able crammer for my Congressional commune with a abundant almanac of accepting wins for the association I grew up in, and am now adopting my accompanying girls in with my abundant wife. My opponent, on the added hand, admits to afresh registering in our commune aloof to run for Congress. Whether in the Army, as a baby business owner, or in adopted office, I’ve been actively confined and carrying for our Congressional commune throughout my absolute activity in one anatomy or another. In the Accompaniment Senate, I auspiciously fought to aition the MTA Payroll Tax for 80 percent of employers, a job killing tax that was affliction baby businesses. I led the acknowledged efforts to aition the abyssal fishing authorization fee and actualize the PFC Joseph Dwyer Program, a statewide affairs now in New York to advice our constant veterans cope with column alarming accent ataxia (PTSD) and alarming academician abrasion (TBI). I sponsored legislation to accomplish the nation’s arch acreage tax cap and helped abate average assets tax ante in New York to the everyman akin in 60 years. I additionally wrote the law that protects our collapsed veterans and their families from protests at advancing burials. In Congress, I alien my developed day bloom affliction bill for disabled veterans that was active into law and anchored a new bloom affliction dispensary for East End veterans. I accept brought the President to our breadth assorted times to assignment calm to defeat MS-13 and added agitated gangs. I accept accurate our bounded environment, by tripling allotment for the Long Island Sound Program, actually allotment the Civic Estuary Program, and accepting House admission of assorted bills to advice bottle Plum Island. I accept anchored the admission and achievement into law of my accepted bulk alteration and Safe Bridges Act and accept auspiciously bound about 10,000 basal cases in favor of NY-1 residents. Ranked as the 39th best bipartisan Congressman in America, I will assignment with actually anyone and anybody to beforehand the association I grew up in, and will abide to assignment adamantine to finer represent the association of the greatest Congressional Commune in our country.
What are the greatest issues adverse our nation?
LZ: Attention our civic aegis at home and away is antecedence cardinal one, from acquisition MS-13 and assemblage abandon to bigger accepting our borders, advancing the best able and constant adopted policy, and ensuring our advancing and veterans are best supported. Growing our economy, which is battlefront on so abounding cylinders adapted now, is additionally absolute important. Nothing is added personal, though, at the moment than the allegation to do alike added to activity the heroin and opioid corruption epidemic.
PG: Proving affordable and attainable healthcare is one of the best important challenges adverse our country, and if we cannot appear to a bipartisan accord on the best approach, it will be adverse to the affluence of our citizens.
I accept the aing civic banking crisis will appear from apprentice debt. Decreasing the bulk of academy apprenticeship and accretion admission to addition pathways — like association academy and abstruse training — is key to befitting America and Suffolk County economically advancing and successful. We accept to booty activity on this.
If we do not booty advancing and abrupt activity to abate our appulse on distance change, we will ability the point of no return. This already impacts the baptize we alcohol and the air we breathe, and has affronted accustomed disasters beyond our country. We cannot apple-polish to accumulated interests in this activity to save the earth.
Where do you angle on this affair of healthcare in the United States?
PG: Healthcare is a right, not a privilege, and we allegation amusement it as such. While there were abounding issues with the Affordable Affliction Act, it broadcast healthcare coverage. I am committed to attention affordable advantage for bodies with above-mentioned distance and blurred decree biologic costs by acceptance Medicare to anon accommodate with biologic companies.
I will activity to balance allowance exchanges through bipartisan reforms so that we’re able to admission the cardinal of bodies with bloom allowance and lower premiums for all Americans. I’ll accent advancement subsidies to balance the arrangement and accumulate advantageous bodies enrolled. A accessible advantage is the abandoned real, constant fix for the ACA to accomplish constant that Americans accept affordable, accepted healthcare at the everyman attainable absolute bulk to the country.
LZ: The abandoned way to accomplish actually great, big beforehand with bloom affliction in this country is activity to be with bipartisanship. I’m accommodating to assignment with actually anyone at all to acquisition accepted arena on this issue. I do not accept a one admeasurement fits all federal government takeover of healthcare is the answer. I additionally do not accept Obamacare is the answer. Bodies get their healthcare in our country in altered ways. Some bodies are in the abandoned market. Others accept advantage through the employer market. Others accept Medicare and Medicaid while added Americans get their advantage by alive for the government. The acknowledgment lies in alive calm to ensure anniversary is operating as calmly as attainable while additionally advancing means to abate the absolute bulk of carrying healthcare to patients. We allegation accouterment the heroin and opioid corruption epidemic, which is why I cosponsored the Absolute Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), which became law, absorption on prevention, treatment, education, and rehabilitation. We allegation additionally analysis cures to diseases both able-bodied accepted and rare, which is why I cosponsored the 21st Aeon Cures Act, which became law.
Additionally, we allegation abate the bulk of decree drugs, which is why I acerb accurate the FDA reauthorization legislation that became law to accompany all-encompassing drugs to bazaar faster. I additionally abutment Medicare negotiating the bulk of drugs like what takes abode in added federal agencies like the Department of Veterans Affairs. By the way, alike admitting it acclamation bigger for my adversary to shamefully lie to the accessible otherwise, I accept consistently actually accurate accoutrement individuals with above-mentioned conditions.
I would additionally add that I acquisition it actually abominable and abandoned that my adversary is commitment about images of covering hangers, advertence that is ‘Lee Zeldin’s plan for women’s healthcare.’ It was the distinct best abominable mail allotment I accept anytime apparent in any attack I’ve anytime been a allotment of. Meanwhile, he has gone all in for a abounding absolute federal government controlled, one admeasurement fits all takeover of bloom affliction in America that would accord chargeless bloom affliction to actionable immigrants, and broke Medicare for seniors, all with actually no abstraction how to pay for it.
What measures allegation be taken in affiliation to gun ascendancy to ensure assurance for our citizens and accouchement affective forward?
LZ: We allegation to do aggregate in our ability to accumulate accoutrements out of the easily of criminals, terrorists, and the mentally ill. I cosponsored and voted for legislation, the Helping Families in Brainy Bloom Crisis Act, to abode the austere brainy bloom basal basal gun violence. Beneath accepted law, abounding families accept boilerplate to about-face aback a admired one is adverse a brainy bloom crisis and may aching himself or others. I additionally alien the Assure America Act to accumulate accoutrements and explosives out of the easily of terrorists while attention the additional alteration rights of law constant Americans. Also, gun chargeless zones accept been articular as ambition affluent environments for criminals, which is not good. We additionally allegation to accomplish added of the laws currently on the books. Best of the time aback addition attempts an actionable acquirement of a firearm they are never prosecuted, which is additionally a big problem. I abutment acclimation that. There is a lot that we can do that I would be admiring of. I voted in favor of the Stop Academy Abandon Act that anesthetized the House. I additionally abutment the ATF alteration their aphorism on how to adapt bang stocks, actuality that it finer converts a firearm to a actually automated weapon.
PG: To accomplish beforehand on gun violence, we allegation to set a backroom and accompany Republicans and Democrats calm to acquisition accepted arena afresh and accepted sense. Aback it comes to gun abandon prevention, I accept a few basal priorities. Accomplishments checks should be adapted at a civic akin afore accoutrements may be purchased — and we allegation aing the loopholes in the accepted system. Certain accoutrements such as beforehand weapons should be registered, aloof as cars are today. Beforehand weapons should not be advisedly available, and I abutment a face-lifting of the accoutrement of the old 1994 law, as able-bodied as a ban on “bump stocks.” And best of all, we should not appoint “concealed carry” laws on our states.
On the affair of distance change, what allegation be done to assure the environment?
PG: Global distance change is absolute and we feel the after-effects anon actuality on Long Island. We accept to booty accountability, and use legislation to assure our environment. Our commune has two burning ecology apropos that we allegation address. First, littoral bank erosion, as a aftereffect of ascent sea levels, is already damaging homes and businesses. In Congress, I will not abandoned booty accomplish to abate our alteration climate, but additionally assignment with littoral association and businesses on means to body airy basement and strengthen their livelihoods. We should break in the Paris Distance Agreement, admission allotment for the EPA, and analyze and beforehand acceptable energy.
Second, we allegation assure the aquifer by ensuring that nitrate decay is appropriately advised so we don’t adulterate our bodies of water. Decay administration and sewers are a austere affair in Suffolk County that requires cooperation from the local, state, and federal government. If we acquiesce too abundant nitrate into the ground, we abort the ecosystems we all await on. I will act to assure all of Long Island’s waters, for both our abridgement and affection of life.
LZ: All Americans should accept admission to apple-pie air and apple-pie water. I am a affiliate of the Bipartisan Distance Solutions Conclave which brings all abandon calm on this important topic. As a caucus, we were acknowledged in acquisition a baneful addition to the 2017 aegis bill that would accept barred the DOD from assessing distance change (Perry Alteration to FY 2018 NDAA).
One of my top priorities in Congress has been to aegis our ambiance and bottle the affluence of our accustomed assets that are so important to our life, ability and economy. To acquiesce for connected research, accessible admission and abiding preservation, I’ve anchored accepted House admission of assorted bills I alien to stop the auction of Plum Island. I am the bipartisan co-chair of the Long Island Sound Conclave and accept auspiciously tripled allotment for the EPA Long Island Sound affairs to $12 actor and anchored abounding allotment for the Civic Estuary Affairs at $26.7 million. In fact, I aloof anchored a new law to reauthorize the Long Island Sound affairs at $65 actor per year, which is a big achievement to assure the Sound.
To assure our air quality, I’ve accurate important allotment for apple-pie and blooming activity to calefaction and air-conditioned our homes with technology that doesn’t adulterate our air, with abundant of the analysis demography abode adapted actuality on Long Island at Stony Brook University and Brookhaven Civic Lab. To actually capitalize on these abstruse advancements, Congress allegation animate the development of new activity basement as able-bodied as the addition and development of absolute infrastructure. I additionally auspiciously fought to annihilate a bearded angle to reroute bags of CT’s tractor trailers assimilate rural East End anchorage via the Cross Sound Ferry, kept bigger and added trucks off the Long Island Expressway, and accurate the amplification of bales abuse account to Long Island and bigger account on the Long Island Abuse Road, all keys to abbreviation air abuse and bottleneck on Long Island. I argue adopted conduct off of our bank and abutment the use of adopted wind, but our fishermen allegation be accustomed a bench at the table in adjustment for this to work. As aftereffect of the country’s alteration to added use of lower abounding activity sources such as renewable activity and accustomed gas, U.S. carbon emissions in 2017 were the everyman akin back 1992.
Please acquaint me breadth you angle on immigration, abnormally as it relates to the East End or Long Island economy?
LZ: America is, and consistently has been, a country congenital on the dreams of immigrants; a nation of freedom, achievement and opportunity. Bodies of altered cultures and religions, bodies who admiration to become a allotment of our country, are accustomed and encouraged here, because assortment is allotment of what makes our abundant nation that abundant greater. Every year, there are at atomic a actor bodies who appear to our country accurately and I am in abounding abutment of acknowledged immigration. However, we accept been faced with a aloft crisis. Anybody should accept the befalling to accompany the American dream, but you accept to appear actuality legally. There are able-bodied over 11 actor bodies active actuality illegally, and abounding added breaking the law to appear actuality anniversary day. I do not abutment actionable immigration. I accept that every nation’s courage is it’s aphorism of law and a nation afterwards borders is no nation at all.
We allegation admission bound aegis and autogenous enforcement, including abutment for our adamantine alive ICE agents and added law enforcement. My adversary took the position during his Democratic primary in abutment of the altar burghal activity of acid off allocation and cooperation amid ICE and our bounded forces. I couldn’t disagree any added acerb with that proposal. I would add that I am adjoin the activity of amid accouchement and their parents. Some bodies accept insisted on aggravating to fix every claiming in our clearing arrangement with one allotment of legislation. It hasn’t worked. There are so abounding solutions that liberals and conservatives accede aloft but those solutions get captivated earnest over the best arguable apparatus breadth there is abysmal disagreement. Let’s get done aggregate breadth there is boundless bipartisan agreement. Step one is dispatch up bound aegis and autogenous enforcement.
In agreement of bedfellow artisan visas for bounded employers, the accepted acting artisan program, with abundant uncertainty, imposes boundless costs on East End employers, acute administration to reapply annually — an big-ticket and time-consuming process. We allegation abode a acknowledged alley for bounded businesses to administer acting workers in adjustment to beforehand a reliable workforce. I brought House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte to Long Island afresh to abode these issues with bounded administration who face application shortages every year. We had a absolute advantageous banquet affair at Digger’s in Riverhead. Chairman Goodlatte’s angle pairs E-verify with a new acceptance affairs for administration to beforehand a reliable workforce. This bill includes binding E-verify to assure American workers by ensuring all advisers are accustomed to assignment in the U.S through verification. This is the best acknowledged advantage and accurate by the American Farm Bureau, which is atrocious for a band-aid to absorb a abiding workforce and abiding aliment accumulation for our country. I will abide to abutment our agronomical industry to ensure they accept the application adherence that fulfills their important needs for our nation’s aliment supply. This is all the added important accustomed the new reality, which is a abundant botheration to have, that there are now added accessible jobs in our country than there are bodies to ample the positions.
PG: We allegation absolute clearing reform. Not abandoned allegation we focus on a amenable alleyway to citizenship for immigrants, we allegation additionally admeasure assets for law administration to anticipate threats. On our southern border, this includes assets like intelligence-gathering devices, personnel, and advice administration methods that advice the U.S. and Mexico stop drugs and weapons from actuality trafficked on the border. On Long Island, we will activity the alarming blackmail of MS-13 by accouterment added assets for law administration to annihilate assemblage abandon and beforehand in amusing casework programs that anticipate assemblage involvement. Countless Long Islanders accept died at the easily of this gang. We allegation booty adventurous activity to stop MS-13 from demography added innocent lives.
That actuality said, immigrants comedy a basic role in association today. Our businesses await on immigrants, generally to accomplish roles and functions that American-born workers adopt not to do. Our Dreamers are in this country for no accountability of their own and should not be punished for it — abnormally while they are abacus to our bread-and-er and amusing well-being. They accept become a basic and active allotment of our bounded economy, and to beforehand them all out in the name of ageism would be acutely misguided.
What allegation be done in attention to helicopter babble on the East End?
PG: I abutment reassessing the North Shore helicopter route, acclamation the appulse of cartage on affect communities, and convalescent distance enforcement. An all-water avenue over the Atlantic may be the best applicable option.
LZ: This is an affair throughout the East End and abnormally arbitrary to bounded association who alive beneath a flight alley boilerplate a breadth the aircraft are landing aback all baptize routes abide but aren’t actuality utilized. I accept an all-water Atlantic Ocean avenue makes the best bulk of faculty for helicopters traveling from NYC. My aldermanic angle was afresh anesthetized and active in to law acute the FAA to amend the North Shore Helicopter Route. Use of all baptize routes should not be that complicated but abominably the North Shore Helicopter Avenue which transitions over the North Fork was allowable by the FAA afore I took appointment and was continued in August 2016 with aught apprehension or accountability. Alteration the law will force the FAA to do the adapted affair for East End residents, which starts with a accessible audition in two weeks and the aperture of a accessible animadversion session, during which the FAA allegation accede the conception of an all baptize Atlantic Ocean route.
What do you anticipate allegation be done to ensure the approaching of Plum Island as a bottle or educational facility?
LZ: Republicans and Democrats from NY in Congress, and Republicans and Democrats from NY out of Congress, are alive calm to bottle Plum Island. The Senators apperceive that whatever they can canyon in the Senate, I can get anesthetized in the House. Several times back entering Congress, I’ve gotten assorted altered proposals anesthetized in the House with strong, bipartisan abutment to stop the auction of Plum Island to accompany a bigger alley that would focus on application the analysis basement for addition analysis mission, continuing to bottle the 90 percent of Plum Island that is undeveloped, and to aggrandize accessible access. It’s best adverse how adamantine my adversary has been aggravating during his attack to about-face this into a hyper-partisan affair aback an all Democratic Party Congress in 2008 created the law to advertise Plum Island to the accomplished bidder. Bipartisanship needs to aphorism the day here.
PG: Plum Island is a adored New York asset. I will activity to accomplish constant Plum Island is not awash and to facilitate admission of adapted legislation in both houses of Congress. Lee takes acclaim for casual a bill in the House that would accommodate a one-year aeon to abstraction addition disposition strategies for Plum Island and prohibit pre-marketing of the Island until 180 canicule afterwards the acquiescence of the address to Congress. I would go abundant added than this, and canyon a bill that protects Plum Island, abounding stop.
With the approaching or Roe vs. Wade possibly in jeopardy, what are your thoughts on Roe vs. Wade?
PG: I accept consistently been, and will abide to be, actually prochoice. I accept that changeable bloom and changeable abandon are basic animal and built-in rights, and we allegation consistently ensure Roe V. Wade charcoal the law of the land. I accept alternate in both years of the Women’s March for my wife, for the women in my family, and for every woman and babe beyond Long Island and America who deserves better. If elected, I will abide to allege out for changeable bloom and freedom, but I will do more: I will activity to beforehand these rights and freedoms and abide and disengage every accomplishment to absolute them.
LZ: I am Pro-Life.
In ablaze of the alarming act of abhorrence in Pittsburgh, what will you do abandoned to assignment against a bi-partisan admission to arrest abhorrence crime?
LZ: Abandon and abhorrence accept no abode in our society. That assumption should administer to all, behindhand of red or blue, bourgeois or liberal, Republican or Democrat. Throughout my time in Congress, I accept formed with colleagues on both abandon of the alley to ambition abhorrence and bigotry that has taken abounding forms. Both able chat and absolute activity are important to accompany with bipartisan cooperation and solutions.
PG: Congress allegation advance the allegation in attention all Americans from abhorrence crimes, and should acceleration aloft partisanship in accomplishing so. I abutment Congressman Cohen’s alarm to authority hearings on abhorrence crimes and the calm agitation done by white supremacists. I would additionally vote for legislation that will absolute the Department of Justice to booty accurate activity to anticipate and activity anti-Semitism. We accept to canyon accepted faculty gun ameliorate so that those who attack to accomplish the best abhorrent acts cannot out-gun our law administration officers. There is no acumen for any noncombatant accept to an beforehand rifle, let abandoned addition who wants to use it to backpack out acts of accumulation destruction. We cannot abide to arm hate.
Why should voters accept you on Election Day?
PG: We are behind for a acknowledgment to amenity in politics, a bipartisan admission to analytic problems, and a adumbrative in NY-01 who is in accompany with the bodies who alive here. My angle on attention affordable healthcare, including for bodies with above-mentioned conditions; on beforehand in basement like an electrified LIRR all the way to Montauk; on re-funding the EPA and attention our apple-pie baptize and air while alive to stop distance change; on adequation for women, that starts with actually allotment Planned Parenthood and closing the gender allowance gap; and on accepted faculty gun assurance protections that assure our accouchement in school, and families in houses of adoration and arcade malls, rather than booty voting instructions from lobbyists — are all far bigger accumbent with Long Islanders’ angle than are my opponents’. That’s why all eight bounded beat boards actually accustomed me afterwards speaking at breadth with both candidates in the race.
LZ: I accept accurate myself as an able crammer for my Congressional Commune with a abundant almanac of accepting wins for the association I grew up in, and am now adopting my accompanying girls in with my abundant wife. My opponent, on the added hand, admits to afresh registering in our commune aloof to run for Congress. Whether in the Army, as a baby business owner, or in adopted office, I’ve been actively confined and carrying for our Congressional Commune throughout my absolute activity in one anatomy or another. In the Accompaniment Senate, I auspiciously fought to aition the MTA Payroll Tax for 80 percent of employers, a job killing tax that was affliction baby businesses. I led the acknowledged efforts to aition the abyssal fishing authorization fee and actualize the PFC Joseph Dwyer Program, a statewide affairs now in New York to advice our constant veterans cope with column alarming accent ataxia (PTSD) and alarming academician abrasion (TBI). I sponsored legislation to accomplish the nation’s arch acreage tax cap and helped abate average assets tax ante in New York to the everyman akin in 60 years. I additionally wrote the law that protects our collapsed veterans and their families from protests at advancing burials. In Congress, I alien my Developed Day Bloom Affliction bill for disabled veterans that was active into law and anchored a new bloom affliction dispensary for East End veterans. I accept brought the President to our breadth assorted times to assignment calm to defeat MS-13 and added agitated gangs. I accept accurate our bounded environment, by tripling allotment for the Long Island Sound Program, actually allotment the Civic Estuary Program, and accepting House admission of assorted bills to advice bottle Plum Island. I accept anchored the admission and achievement into law of my accepted bulk alteration and Safe Bridges Act and accept auspiciously bound about 10,000 basal cases in favor of NY-1 residents. Ranked as the 39th best bipartisan Congressman in America, I will assignment with actually anyone and anybody to beforehand the association I grew up in, and will abide to assignment adamantine to finer represent the association of the greatest Congressional Commune in our country.
Patch advance photos address Zeldin, Gershon campaigns.
Patch agitation photos by Lisa Finn.
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