WE NEED YOUR HELP — Support your hometown newspaper by making a donation.

East Meadow reacts to local election results, Biden's victory

Posted

At press time on Tuesday, President-elect Joe Biden had tallied over 76 million votes — more than any other presidential candidate in history — besting President Trump’s 71 million-plus votes, the second-most in history.

Only two states remained to be decided, Georgia and North Carolina, according to the Associated Press. A win by either candidate in either race, however, would not affect the overall outcome of the election.

Biden had 290 electoral votes secured, the AP was reporting. If he were to win Georgia — an increasingly likely outcome — he would end the election with 306 electoral votes, 36 more than he needed to win the presidency.

Supporters of both candidates gathered at the Bellmore LIRR station on Saturday, after the AP and major networks called the race in Pennsylvania in Biden’s favor, putting him over the top. Biden backers were clearly in a celebratory mood, while Trump’s followers protested that the election wasn’t over. Police were on the scene, and told both sides to keep their distance from each other.

On Twitter, U.S. Rep. Kathleen Rice, who last week won her re-election bid in New York’s 4th Congressional District, congratulated Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. Rice tweeted that the results of the election filled her with hope, adding, “The Biden-Harris Administration will lead with dignity and help bring our nation back together.”

Helen Meittinis, president of the Community Association of Stewart Avenue, has been an election poll worker at Bowling Green Elementary School, in Salisbury, for the past 25 years. “I’m very happy that the people who’ve worked hard for our communities have gotten back in office,” she said of the results of the local elections, adding that many people were so consumed with the presidential contest that “we forget we still have our own communities to worry about.”

State Assemblyman John Mikulin, a Republican from Levittown, was re-elected to represent the 17th District, defeating Democrat Mark Engelman. And in the 6th Senate District, Republican challenger Dennis Dunne Sr., of Levittown, unseated Democratic State Sen. Kevin Thomas, also of Levittown.

When it came to Biden’s victory, however, Meittinis was not as pleased. “Our economy was doing so well,” she said, “greater than it has been in years.”

Other East Meadow residents had different thoughts about the presidential election results. “I’m hoping we could see a return to civil discourse and leadership that respects checks and balances in government,” said Jess Bunshaft, 54. “Our president needs to understand that no one man has ultimate power.”

Bunshaft was referring to the 193 executive orders Trump has signed since he took office — a record for a first term, surpassing President George W. Bush’s 171, according to the Federal Register.

Bunshaft, an attorney and a member of the New York State Bar Association, has been a poll watcher in the past and volunteered this election cycle to answer calls to the Election Protection Hotline. Most involved issues like registering to vote, Bunshaft said, adding, “I thought it was the purest thing I could do to help people vote.”

Alyssa Seidman and Andrew Garcia contributed to this story.