GLEN COVE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi will return to politics after defeating Republican and former Mineola mayor Jack Martins for the 3rd Congressional seat on Long Island.

The seat is currently held by Democrat Steve Israel, who did not seek reelection.

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The Congressman-elect told WCBS 880’s Mike Xirinachs that his focus now will be problem-solving.

“We have to figure out how to get people of good will to talk to each other, to work together to solve problems and to make peoples’ lives better,” Suozzi said.

The Democrat will head to Washington amid a Republican-controlled Congress, and admitted surprise over Donald Trump’s presidential victory.

“I think everybody is surprised as to what happened, but the reality is that people have spoken — the is the United States of America and we need to support the president of the United States of America,” Suozzi said.

“We have to be optimistic, and not be afraid,” Suozzi added.

Suozzi took the election with 52 percent of the vote, as compared to Martins’ 48 percent.

Republican Lee Zeldin, who won congressional re-election in Suffolk County, told WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall that he hopes to achieve a lot of goals under a Trump presidency. 

“We need to transition as quickly as possible back to that conversation that talks about hammering out the specifics on solutions to get good bills to help the American people,” Zeldin said.

Zeldin said he hopes to focus on issues involving national security, strengthening the middle class, improving the quality of education taking better care of veterans.

“There is so much that he had discussed that I agree with should be a very high priority,” Zeldin said.

Republicans retained their lock on the House for two more years, now controlling 222 seats while Democrats have 155.

In the Senate, Republicans dominate with 51 seats to 47 held by the Democrats.

 

 

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