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Zove announces Assembly candidacy against Fitzpatrick

Rick Brand

Suffolk legislative aide Jason Zove has announced his candidacy for State Assembly against Republican incumbent Michael Fitzpatrick (R-St. James).
Zove, a Commack Democrat, worked for the late Presiding Officer Bill Lindsay (D-Holbrook) beginning in 2010. He continues to work for Lindsay’s son, William Lindsay III, a Bohemia Democrat who succeeded his late father.
Zove, 26, said he is running because the late presiding officer sparked his “passion for public policy.” He also said “a lot of people are frustrated and concerned” about Fitzpatrick’s voting record and are “disappointed in his political ideology.”
Fitzpatrick, who backs pension reform and relief from state mandates, has won Conservative Party honors several times for having the most conservative voting record in the State Legislature.
Zove called himself a fiscal conservative who is moderate on social issues.
“This is going to be an absolute battle,” said Zove, who argues that Fitzpatrick has received little testing in past elections. He said he expects to run an aggressive grassroots campaign and will file papers to form a fundraising committee within a week. He said he expects to screen before the Smithtown Democratic sometime this month.
Fitzpatrick, 56, a 12-year Assembly veteran who is ranking minority member of the Housing Committee, said “I look forward to meeting him and having a nice vigorous debate about the issue see what people of Smithtown think.”
Richard Schaffer, Suffolk Democratic chairman, said he supports Zove’s candidacy. “I think Jason will make a great first time candidate based on experience in county government and community service,” Schaffer said.