Two upstate appellate judges and a Long Island justice who sits on the appellate court in Manhattan were defeated on Nov. 6 in their reelection bids for Supreme Court, according to unofficial returns.
Justices Bernard Malone Jr. (See Profile) and E. Michael Kavanagh (See Profile), both Republicans who sit in the Appellate Division, Third Department in Albany, were beaten by Democrats Richard Mott and Stephan Schick.
And Justice James Catterson of Suffolk County (See Profile) came in eighth among 12 candidates vying for six seats in the Tenth Judicial District. Catterson sits on the First Department bench.
The two other appellate judges seeking new Supreme Court terms won on Election Day. Justices Leonard Austin (See Profile) and Peter Skelos (See Profile), both sitting in the Second Department, were reelected on Long Island. Skelos was the only apparent Republican victor on Long Island.
Throughout the state, judicial election voting appeared to be heavily influenced by the presence of Democratic President Barack Obama at the top of the ballot, just as it was the first time Obama ran for president in 2008.
Four years ago, three Republican judges on the Appellate Division also failed to win new Supreme Court terms, costing them their seats on the appeals court bench.
Obama trounced Republican John McCain 63 percent to 36 percent in 2008 in the presidential vote, and defeated Mitt Romney by an almost identical percentage in New York on Election Day.
Supreme Court Justice John LaCava (See Profile), a Republican who was defeated for a second term in the Ninth Judicial District in the mid-Hudson Valley, said Obama's strong showing spelled doom for his reelection hopes.
When first elected in 1998, LaCava said the counties of Dutchess, Orange and Putnamall in the Ninth districtwere Republican "strongholds" that he captured to win the election. This year, however, LaCava managed to carry only Putnam County in finishing a distant fourth behind Democrats Maria Rosa of Dutchess, a court attorney; Westchester Acting Supreme Court Justice Gerald Loehr (See Profile) and Goshen attorney Sandra Sciortino.
Three Supreme Court openings were filled in the district on Nov. 6. LaCava finished 46,707 votes behind Sciortino, for the third and final seat.