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Incumbent Rock-to-Ridge congressman beats tax cheat in GOP primary • Brooklyn Paper

Incumbent Rock-to-Ridge congressman beats tax cheat in GOP primary

Rep. Dan Donovan represents drivers on both sides of the Brooklyn-Staten Island span.
Photo by Georgine Benvenuto

The sitting Rock-to-Ridge congressman clinched the Republican nomination in the June 26 primary race, beating back a challenge from the convicted felon who formerly held the seat.

Incumbent Rep. Dan Donovan skated past the admitted tax cheat by a nearly 28-percent margin, according to the New York Times.

During the campaign for their party’s nomination for the 11th congressional district — which includes Staten Island and Bay Ridge — the pair sparred over whose policies more closely mirrored those of President Trump, but the president ultimately threw his support behind Donovan last month in a tweet.

On election night, Donovan fired off multiple, gushing tweets praising Trump, crediting him with his own primary win and the current state of the country.

“Thank you @realDonaldTrump! A man I’ve known for 20 years who had the confidence in me, who stuck his neck out,” Donovan wrote in one tweet.

“Our country is at a pinnacle point in our history,” he wrote in another. “Look at what President Trump has done.”

And just a few minutes later, Trump tweeted his congratulations to Donovan — who often voted against Trump’s agenda last year — praising the New York voters who cast their ballots in his favor.

“Tremendous win for Congressman Dan Donovan. You showed great courage in a tough race!” Trump tweeted. “New York, and my many friends on Staten Island, have elected someone they have always been very proud of. Congratulations!”

More than 12,700 voters turned out for Donovan to give him nearly 64 percent of the vote, while a bit more than 7,000 granted his competitor the remaining ballots. Donovan has held the seat since he won it in a special election in 2015, the year after his primary challenger pleaded guilty to one count of tax fraud on a 20-count indictment alleging he hid more than $1 million in sales at his Manhattan restaurant, Healthalicious, and subsequently resigned.

On the Democratic side, Army veteran Max Rose secured the nomination in a crowded field of six candidates, securing more than 10,700 Dem votes, or more than 64 percent overall.

Reach reporter Julianne McShane at (718) 260–2523 or by e-mail at jmcshane@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @juliannemcshane.

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