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Judge Rules Rockland Candidate May Return To The Ballot; An Appeal Is Filed

A voting machine

A third candidate in a Democratic primary for Rockland County executive is back on the ballot after a state Supreme Court decision.

Village of Suffern Mayor Dagan LaCorte had been considered off the ballot after Rockland’s Democratic Elections Commissioner said he was 74 signatures short of the 2,000 necessary to secure a spot. This was after many signatures were ruled invalid following numerous objections to LaCorte’s petition filed by the campaign of candidate David Fried. Yet a state Supreme Court justice ruled Tuesday that LaCorte did have enough validated signatures to return to the ballot, with 2,024. Here’s LaCorte, who has been endorsed by state Senator David Carlucci, an Independent Democrat.

David Fried Campaign Manager Stephen Papas says he still believes there are discrepancies with LaCorte’s petition, and is appealing the judge’s decision.

Democratic Elections Commissioner Kristen Stavisky says military ballots need to go out Friday, and the appeal is not expected to be heard until early next week. Should a higher court decision pull LaCorte from the ballot, Stavisky says she would have to upload corrected military ballots. Saying he has nothing to add about Fried’s appeal, LaCorte contends his focus is on the county.

Papas says Fried has remained focus on the county despite the ongoing legal battle. Fried has the endorsements of two previous employers – former President Bill Clinton and Congresswoman Nita Lowey. County legislator Ilan Schoenberger is the other primary candidate. The winner of the Democratic primary faces Republican County Legislator Ed Day. County Executive Scott Vanderhoef, a Republican, announced last year he would not seek reelection to a sixth term.

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