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Libous On Possible Democrat Takeover of Senate: “Lord, I Hope Not”

Bob Joseph/WNBF News

New York State Senator Thomas Libous was blunt when he spoke of the possibility that Democrats may regain control of the Senate in January: “Lord, I hope not.”

Speaking on WNBF Radio’s Binghamton Now program Thursday, Libous said he’s more optimistic that Republicans will hold on to their majority.

The Binghamton Republican is the deputy majority leader of the Senate.

He said it may take up to four weeks before final election results will be known to determine whether Democrats will have won the majority of the 63 Senate seats.

Libous said if Republicans don’t wind up holding most of the seats, he’s confident “some sort of a coalition government” might be developed.

He said envisioned a scenario where Republicans might be joined by a few Democrats in a way that might be “new and fresh and refreshing” to continue to work with Governor Cuomo.

Libous said he would be “very active” in pursuing that type of coalition if Republicans are left in the minority.

In trying to explain the strength of Democratic state senate candidates in Tuesday’s voting, Libous noted President Obama did better in New York this year than in 2008 in some areas.

Libous acknowledged in most parts of the state, it was a tough night for Republicans. He said, “it’s not an excuse. It is what it is.”

Libous said some the campaigns of some state Democratic senate candidates received large contributions from labor unions and other sources.

He also said he believed Hurricane Sandy had an impact. He said the storm “changed the dynamics” of two contests in Queens and Westchester County.

Libous said Republicans had been confident of picking up one of those seats but that didn’t happen.

Libous said he spoke briefly with the governor on Wednesday but didn’t get into a detailed discussion about the outcome of the Senate races, noting Cuomo was focusing on hurricane recovery efforts and the new storm that was affecting the downstate region.

As for a special post-election legislative session, Libous said he feels there’s now a “less than fifty-fifty chance” of that happening.

He said the “enthusiasm” for a special session is “just not there” but he said no final decision has been made.



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