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Voices: A Slow Day at the Polls

In this final look back at Primary Day 2010, The Local East Village spends some time with poll workers at P.S. 34 who describe how they get through a long, uneventful day.

I’ll Be Back, Saujani Says

Reshma Saujani isn’t focusing on the fact that she lost the battle for the 14th Congressional district seat against incumbent Carolyn Maloney. She’s already planning her next run for the position.

“I’m definitely running again. What we built was a movement,” she told The Local East Village at The Press Box bar on the Upper East Side, where she held her election night party yesterday. “There’s no way I’m going to be one of those folks who runs, loses, and you never see them again. We started something, and we’re going to finish it.”

Reshma Saujani, Primary Election Night, 9/14/10Suzanne Rozdeba Reshma Saujani.

Ms. Saujani, 34, who rents in the East Village, took 19 percent (6,231 votes) of the vote to 81 percent (26,303 votes) for Ms. Maloney, a long-time incumbent.

Ms. Saujani said she was proud and moved by yesterday’s experience.

“One of the things we spent time on was getting out the Bangladeshi community,” said Ms. Saujani, who is Indian-American. “To see people who’ve never voted before go to the polls was amazing.”

About 200 people cheered loudly when she walked into her election night party around 11:30 p.m. She fought tears during her concession speech.

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Saujani Loses, Paladino Wins

Reshma Saujani, a hedge fund lawyer and East Village neighbor, attracted only a small fraction of the Democratic vote last night in her bid to defeat United States Representative Carolyn Maloney.

At the end of a day marked by problems with New York’s new optical scanner voting machines and poll workers, Ms. Maloney took 81 percent of the vote in New York’s 14th Congressional district to Ms. Saujani’s 19 percent.

Ms. Maloney has represented this district for 18 years. In November, she faces Republican candidate, Mr. David R. Brumberg.

The big surprise of the night in New York was the nomination of Carl P. Paladino by Republican voters. Mr. Paladino, a real estate developer from Buffalo, is a political novice who left New York’s Republican Party reeling by defeating former Congressman Rick A. Lazio.

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At the Polls, Ovals and Question Marks

Polls.09.14Amanda VanAllen Amid questions about a new balloting process, voters across the East Village streamed to the polls for the primary on Tuesday, including here at P.S. 34.

Did You Vote?

Share your experiences at the neighborhood polling sites. Tell us about the new voting machines, the poll workers, the turn-out — and, sure, if it makes you feel better, sound off about the candidates, too.

The Day: A Primary and Your Voices

Shepard Fairey Sophie Hoeller

Good morning, East Village.

Today is primary day in New York and, in case you missed it, one of our first posts contained a summary of some of the major races and a link to help identify your nearest polling place.

In other neighborhood news, EV Grieve has an eye-opening post about the ongoing dispute over the Sin Sin Lounge, on Second Avenue and Fifth Street.

The Local’s arrival in the neighborhood prompted a considerable amount of discussion. The perspectives in the conversation have ranged from friendly to neutral — to not so neutral. In any case, we appreciate the reads by our neighbors and our neighbor blogs.

One of the most interesting posts related to The Local was this one by Curbed NY, which prompts us to encourage you to please nominate your suggestions for our blogroll. We should also note that you can access the blog at an abbreviated URL,

Our Neighbor, The Candidate

Reshma SaujaniEast Village resident Reshma Saujani, right, is a candidate for the Democratic nomination for the 14th Congressional District.

Only days before the Sept. 14 Democratic primary, Reshma Saujani knew she still had a big hill to climb in her bid to unseat Representative Carolyn Maloney from the 14th Congressional District seat that she has held for 18 years.

Ms. Saujani, 34, is a lawyer who lives in the East Village. Because she is a neighbor, The Local East Village sat down with her last week, and discussed her views on issues affecting East Village residents, as well as her stance on building a mosque near Ground Zero; Bill Clinton’s support of her opponent (Ms. Saujani is a former fund raiser for Hillary Rodham Clinton); her stance on a Florida pastor’s plan to burn the Quran; and her claims that Ms. Maloney hasn’t done enough for 9/11 first responders.

Ms. Maloney’s record and views can be found on her official Congressional Web page and her campaign Web site.


Many East Village residents are concerned about the increasing number of high-rise apartment buildings being built. What is your stance?

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Primary 2010|Machine Politics

As if getting New Yorkers to the polls on Primary Day wasn’t difficult enough, the city’s new voting machines may make it harder. Although New York managed to hold on to its lever machines longer than any other state in the country, tomorrow’s primaries will mark the debut of the controversial modernized system.

DSC_0025Alexandra DiPalma Janet Virgil and Jacquie Tellalian on First Avenue.

“I read all about the new machines and have seen the commercials, but I still don’t really get it,” said Jacquie Tellalian, 56 of Midtown, who was strolling on St. Marks Place recently. “They look like a nightmare from hell. It’s like, isn’t there an easier way?”

Rather than simply pulling a red lever, voters use pens to mark bubbles on paper ballots. These ballots are then fed through an optical scanner.

On Aug. 31, the city Board of Elections launched a campaign intended to familiarize voters with the new process, which replaces the machines that have been used since the 1960s.

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Primary 2010 | An East Village Primer

Tomorrow is Primary Day.

Voters in New York who are registered in a party can cast ballots to nominate their party’s candidates for a variety of elected offices, including United States Senator, United States Congress, governor, attorney general and state legislators.

Usually only the party faithful — those most devoted to a party, personality, cause or political philosophy — come out to vote on Primary Day, which always occurs in mid-September in New York (Sept. 11, 2001 was a primary day).

This year an extra element of drama is added to the day, as it is the first election in which New Yorkers will no longer cast their ballots by flipping a lever in those old, clunky, mechanical machines. Instead, voters will write their choices on a paper ballot, then slip them into an optical scanner, where the votes will be recorded.

Here’s some news you can use if you intend to vote tomorrow:

WHEN: Every polling place in New York City is open from 6 a.m.-9 p.m.

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