Aug 10, 2012
By Ryan Lavis
With the District 9 State Senate race a little less than three months away, Nassau Democrats have nominated Thomas Feffer, a 24-year-old intern with the Nassau County Democratic Committee as its challenger to the incumbent, New York State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos in the upcoming November elections.
“He is definitely younger and this is his first race, but he’s excited about it,” Jay Jacobs, Nassau County Democratic Chairman, said. “We’re looking forward to working with him and making a go for it.”
Details on Feffer and his policies are still unclear. Jacobs along with other representatives from the Nassau Democratic Committee could not elaborate on Feffer’s qualifications, but did confirm that he has never run for political office.
According to a LinkedIn page for Thomas Feffer, he has been an intern with the Nassau County Democratic Committee since sometime in 2012. His duties as an intern include assisting with clerical work and helping to package campaign materials, which is outlined on his public LinkedIn account. He also prepares spreadsheets.
Ian Steinberg, a representative with the Nassau Democratic Committee said that Feffer has been with the Committee for a few years as a Democratic activist.
Feffer’s LinkedIn page lists him as having graduated from Penn State University in 2011 with a BA in Economics and Psychology. It also states that he was a legal intern with the Pennsylvania office of the Attorney General.
Five Towns Democratic Club President Steve Anchin said it’s too early in the election season for him to make a decision on whether he supports the nomination of Feffer – he also noted that he does not know enough about Feffer and his policies.
“What can you say? It’s August,” Anchin said. “ I don’t think the State Senate has really geared up its campaigns yet.”
Skelos, the Majority Leader of the New York State Senate, has represented District 9 for 30 years, since 1982. In the November 2010 State Senate elections he retained his seat for a 14th consecutive term over Democratic candidate George Sava.
Sava, who said he has no intention of running again, also said that he is not familiar with the current nominee, Feffer.
“Maybe in a month I’ll know more about him, but it’s still early,” he said.
But for these Nassau County Democrats, the policies, age and qualifications of Feffer are secondary when compared to the challenges of facing a political opponent who has the loyalty, following and reputation that Skelos has obtained during his time in office.
“There are advantages to incumbency, Anchin said. “Whatever the political party, it’s difficult when you’re running against an entrenched incumbent, let alone when that incumbent is also the Majority Leader of the New York State Senate.”
Correction: Steve Anchin is incorrectly referred to as the president of the Five Towns Democratic Club. He is the prior president, and currently the Hewlett Democratic Zone Leader . The current president is Legislative District Leader, Chumi Diamond.
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