John Messer, who ran a spirited campaign for Senate in 2010 against Queens State Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky, is the first candidate to declare for the district.
His entry was confirmed by campaign consultant Jay Golub.
“He’s confirmed, at this point, as running,” Golub said, adding that a number of areas that had been favorable to Stavisky were now cut out of the seat.
Messer, an attorney and small businessman, did fairly well in the three-way 2010 race that also included self-funding lotto millionaire Isaac Sasson.
It remains unclear who Messer would be running against. As the lines are currently drawn, the incumbent, Stavisky, has actually been placed in the same district as fellow Democrat State Sen. Tony Avella.
Assuming the new lines stand, Stavisky could always move into the new Asian-majority district. But the lines as currently drawn would make the district harder for Stavisky to win– it previously was 43 percent white and 33 percent Asian.
Obviously, neither Stavisky or Messer are Asian-American, though Messer’s wife is Chinese, which could give him some inroads in the Chinese-American community.
It remains unclear who might emerge as a viable Democratic candidate from the Asian community. A top Queens Republican pick for the seat has already passed, though Queens Republicans have been going all-out to recruit someone viable.
Interestingly enough, Golub, who is working for Messer, a Democrat, is also quite tight with the Queens GOP.
A reader writes in to note that Messer used to be registered as a Republican, which could pose a problem in a Democratic primary. And the reader points out there was also this unflattering article about Messer from the 2010 campaign.
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