With just a few hundred votes separating Phil Nolan from his Republican challenger, the Islip Town Supervisor refused to admit defeat.
“I won’t concede,” said Nolan who has been supervisor for five years.
Why the race was so close still puzzled him. “I don’t understand it,” he said.
With more than 90 percent of districts reporting in, Nolan is down less than 400 votes to Tom Croci an aide to state Sen. Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley).
“The town has been Republican, I guess they went back to their roots,” said Nolan, who admitted he was disappointed in the outcome.
Fighting back his emotions, Nolan still congratulated those in his party, including Town of Babylon Supervisor Steve Bellone, who was elected Suffolk County Executive.
Republicans looked at taking Nolan’s seat as a bright spot, as their top candidate Angie Carpenter was going down to defeat.
Said Sen. John Flanagan (R-Northport): “Taking out a sitting Democratic supervisor is a big thing.”
Legis. Ricardo Montano (D-Brentwood), whose district is a significant part of the town, said that it hurt Nolan not to have the Independence party line, adding that it may have cost him in this tight race.
Nolan said: “What you gonna do? The numbers are the numbers.”