Both Candidates Confident Heading Into Tuesday's Election

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The final push to get out the vote is on in Nassau County’s tightly contested county executive race.

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Republican incumbent Edward Mangano and Democratic challenger Tom Suozzi said they both felt good on their last full day of campaigning Monday.

“I’ve been getting a great reception from people wherever I go,” said Suozzi, who embarked on a whirlwind tour of the county in a recreational vehicle to make a last-ditch plea to voters.

“It’s going great. I’m very encouraged by the residents I’ve been meeting,” said Mangano, who spent part of his day at a job fair at the Nassau Coliseum.

The latest poll shows Mangano has a double-digit lead over Suozzi, who is seeking to get his old job back. Suozzi lost to Mangano in the last election by fewer than 400 votes.

Mangano said he’s encouraged by the polls saying, “It’s always better to be ahead than behind.”

But speaking to CBS 2’s Carolyn Gusoff, he admitted, “The only poll that really, really matters is Election Day.”

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But Suozzi seemed to be unfazed by the numbers.

“I hope that poll puts him to sleep the way it put me to sleep back in 2009 when it showed me 23 points ahead,” Suozzi said.

Both candidates remained confident going into Tuesday’s election.

“The reality is this is a very close race, it’s all about turnout. If people care about the future of Nassau County, because this campaign is a fight for the future, they should come out and vote,” Suozzi said. “I feel very good about it.”

“I hope the residents trust in me to continue the job that I’m doing, allow me another four years to represent this great county,” Mangano said.

Lawrence Levy, executive dean of Hofstra University’s National Center for Suburban Studies, said voter turnout will be key in the race.

“If the turnout is 250,000 or less, Tom Suozzi and the Democrats are going to lose because Republicans are very good at getting their supporters out,” the former PBS talk show host said. “If turnout is 300,000 or more, Tom Suozzi will probably win.”

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