Phil Goldfeder, a Democratic aide to U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), defeated Republican Jane Deacy, a retired city police officer and Republican district leader, in Tuesday’s special election for the 23rd Assembly District seat.
Goldfeder, who lives with his wife, Esther, and two young children in the Rockaways, received 54 percent of the vote, compared to the 46 percent Deacy landed, according to unofficial results from the city Board of Elections. He will take the seat once held by Audrey Pheffer, who resigned in mid-May to become Queens County clerk.
“The people across this district have spoken,” Goldfeder said at his victory party in the Old Mill Yacht Club in Howard Beach. “We want a new generation of political leadership. We want new energy. We want fresh voices in government. You have spoken, and we’re going to do it together.”
Deacy, who spent her evening at Roma View in Howard Beach with Bob Turner, the Republican who won the election to replace former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, bid her opponent well, though she said this may not be the last time she runs for office.
“We fought a good fight, and we woke up a lot of the electorate,” said Deacy, who lives in Rockaway Point with her husband, Ed. “Mr. Goldfeder, I wish you the best of luck. I hope you do everything you promised, and, if not, we’ll be watching and we’ll be back.”
Goldfeder’s campaign received major support from his boss, Schumer, and the city United Federation of Teachers, which endorsed him. A number of other unions backed Goldfeder, including the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association — a blow to Deacy, who had served as an officer and whose husband is a retired NYPD detective.
“I believe in Phillip,” said Pheffer, who attended Goldfeder’s victory party on Tuesday. “I think that he will go around the community and people will learn to like him.”
While the race between Turner and his Democratic opponent, Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck) grew increasingly contentious during the course of the campaign, Goldfeder and Deacy tended to focus more on spreading their own messages than attacking the other. Both said they wanted to eliminate the toll on the Crossbay Bridge, and expressed the need for job creation in the district.
Goldfeder has repeatedly issued calls for “affordable healthcare” and said additional law enforcement is needed.