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Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore had long coattails in New York, sweeping Democratic candidates for Surrogate into office in Westchester and Nassau Counties for the first time in the state’s history. The achievement was all that more impressive in Westchester, where State Supreme Court Justice Anthony A. Scarpino defeated incumbent Surrogate Albert J. Emanuelli by 148,480 votes to 113,767. In Nassau County, District Court Judge John B. Riordan defeated State Supreme Court Justice John DiNoto for the seat left vacant when two-term incumbent Surrogate C. Raymond Radigan bowed out in June after he was unable to secure a cross-endorsement. Riordan, the Democrat, defeated DiNoto, the Republican, by a vote of 242,769 to 215,843. Even though nationwide the outcome of the Presidential election remains in doubt, Vice President Gore outpaced Texas Governor George W. Bush by 103,000 votes in Nassau County and by 62,000 votes in Westchester County. The outpouring of Democratic support for the top of the ticket aided other judicial candidates in both counties. In Nassau, District Court Judge Claire I. Weinberg, the Democratic candidate, defeated Republican Arthur M. Diamond 243,556 votes to 207,163 in a race for County Court. Democrats also claimed victories in four District Court races in Nassau, and conceded defeat in one. One seat was too close to call until the paper ballots are counted. The Democratic candidates handily won two seats in North Hempstead, where Jonathan Kaiman and Scott Fairgrieve defeated their Republican rivals, Barry M. Dennis and Alan J. Reardon, by a 10,000 vote margin. Republican William J. O’Brien, who had been named by Governor Pataki to an interim District Court seat, had no trouble defeating his Democratic opponent Ellen P. Rittberg, 61,648 votes to 54,418, in Oyster Bay. Meanwhile, Democrats Susan T. Kluewer and Valerie Bullard claimed two of three District Court seats in a race covering the towns of Long Beach and North Hempstead. The race for the third seat remained too close to call, with Democrat Joel K. Asarch leading Republican Francis D. Ricigliano by about 1,200 votes — 128,357 to 127,179. In Westchester, Democrats also racked up victories in countywide races for County Court and Family Court. Democrat Les Adler laid claim to the County Court post with 142,770 votes to 105,497 votes for the Republican candidate, Al Naclerio. In the Family Court races, Democrats David Klein and Nilda M. Horowitz rolled up 133,679 and 129,658 votes respectively. The two Republicans, Annette Guarino and Gerry Klein, took 121,191 and 96,672 votes respectively. The Democrats also scored well in the race for eight seats in the 10th Judicial District of the State Supreme Court, which covers both Nassau and Suffolk Counties. The Democrats were claiming six of those seats. The highest vote-getter in the supreme court contest was Democrat Thomas F. Whalen with 457,045 votes. The two Republican winners claimed the second and third spots. Justice Peter Fox Cohalan, a former Suffolk County executive, won a second term with 447,697 votes. Suffolk County Surrogate Gail Prudenti, who had previously been a Supreme Court justice, claimed the third spot with 446,995 votes. Political insiders predict that Prudenti will be in line to become presiding justice of the Appellate Division, 2nd Department, in 2002. The governor is expected to appoint 2nd Department Justice Lawrence J. Bracken to the post after the current Presiding Justice Guy Mangano steps down at the end of the year. Mangano is required by law to relinquish his post because he turned 70 this year. Justice Bracken, who will turn 70 next June, will be in the same position a year from now. Democrats Ira J. Raab and Sandra L. Sgroi also were considered victors by comfortable margins, but the next four Democrats were separated by only 2,000 votes with only three seats remaining. The four Democrats vying for the three remaining seats are Michele M. Woodard, John C. Bivona, William R. LaMarca and Richard Ambro. 9TH JUDICIAL DISTRICT Big Democratic margins racked up in Westchester, however, were not enough to put the Democratic candidate over the top in the race for Supreme Court in the five-county 9th Judicial District. Democrat William J. Giacomo won by 10,000 votes in Westchester County, but lost district wide by 45,000 votes to Court of Claims Judge Andrew P. O’Rourke, who had been a county executive in Westchester County. The other counties in the 9th Judicial District — Dutchess, Orange, Putnam and Rockland — proved to be more fertile ground for Republicans. In a contested race for County Court in Orange County, Republican Carol S. Klein bested Democrat David Levinson, 60,351 votes to 41,335. Similarly, in Putnam County, Republicans Robert Miller and James Rooney won two open County Court seats, defeating Judge Thomas J. Scuccimarra, who ran as a Democrat. Scuccimarra had been named to an interim County Court seat by the governor, but he lost the Republican primary after failing to win the backing of the Putnam Republican Committee. Meanwhile, two Republicans remain locked in a tight race for City Court in Yonkers. Democrat Thomas R. Daly took the first of two seats in that race with a comfortable margin of 3,000 votes. But the second Democrat, Phillip A. Werbel, trailed badly after being tarnished by a judge’s finding that he had committed election fraud in collecting absentee ballots in primaries for the Conservative and Independence lines. Only 55 votes separated the two Republicans for the second seat. Robert C. Cerrato, with 20,513 votes, clung to a razor-thin margin over Edward P. Borrelli, who had 20,458 votes. Throughout New York City, Democrats racked up easy victories in races for supreme court and civil court where they were not cross-endorsed.

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