GRASMERE – New York State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis formally launched her re-election bid on April 23. Wednesday night.
She pledged to continue the Hurricane Sandy recovery effort and to fight “bad legislation” in Albany, “We have a tremendous amount of work still to do,” Malliotakis told supporters at Bocelli Ristorante in Grasmere, where she was joined by state GOP chairman Edward Cox.
Malliotakis, first elected in 2010, said that her district had been “battered by this hurricane,” and that she would fight to ensure that federal money allocated for Sandy relief comes to the city.
“We have had a difficult 17 months,” she said.
Malliotakis said she and other minority Republicans played an “important role” as a check on the Democratic majority in the Assembly.
“We have to push back on bad legislation,” she said. “You have no idea.”
When lawmakers return to Albany, Malliotakis said that she would continue to fight against using taxpayer money for tuition aid for illegal immigrants and convicts. She said she would also continue to oppose public financing of state campaigns.
“This is what they are trying to do with your tax dollars in Albany,” she said.
Cox said that the Island was “Republican territory” and that Malliotakis, mentioned as a potential candidate for lieutenant governor this year, was “destined for higher office.”
“Nothing can restrain Nicole,” Cox said. “She gives [Assembly Speaker] Shelly Silver fits. And he deserves it.”
He said, “You cannot have a better member of the Assembly.”
Brooklyn Conservative chairman Jerry Kassar set the bar high for Malliotakis, calling on voters to return her with at least 70 percent of the vote so she could return to Albany “as one of the most successful legislators winning re-election.”
Assemblyman Joe Borelli scoffed at Democrats who consider Malliotakis’ district a swing seat “because they held it for a brief period of time. How did that work out for them?”
Malliotakis defeated Democratic Assemblywoman Janele Hyer-Spencer for the seat in 2010.
Rep. Michael Grimm said Malliotakis “will not sell out and do the politically expedient thing. She leaves everything in the arena.”
Malliotakis is opposed by Democrat Marybeth Melendez.