By Raanan Geberer
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
NEW YORK — The recent declaration of victory by Republican David Storobin and concession by Democrat Lew Fidler have brought to an end several months of acrimonious challenges, ballot counts, re-counts and legal actions stemming from March’s special election to fill the seat of disgraced state Senator Carl Kruger.
Brooklyn’s Republicans are celebrating the victory, which continues the trend, starting with the election of Congressman Bob Turner, of the GOP winning races outside its traditional stronghold of Bay Ridge. The victory, however, may be a short-lived one, since the district as it currently exists will fall victim to redistricting later this year.
Storobin, a Russian-born bankruptcy, family-law and criminal-law attorney, said in a statement, "I hope this will be an inspiration to any kid who's grown up poor and is told 'you can't succeed,' hopefully this will be an inspiration to them that they, too, can make it. It's really the American Dream."
Fidler, a longtime City Councilman from Flatlands and Canarsie, congratulated Storobin. He said in a statement, “I am left with a choice: to dwell on the disappointment of falling a handful of votes short, or to focus on the faith and commitment that so many showed by believing in me and what I have stood for during my years in public service.
“I have continued to be hard at work as the councilman for the 46th district, a job I love and will continue to do with all my zeal through the remainder of my term in office.”
The Senate district, officially known as the 27th District, covers southeast Brooklyn and contains many Orthodox Jewish and Russian-American voters. Some local Orthodox Jewish leaders criticized Fidler for his support of gay rights legislation and quoted from a 2008 article in the Politicker blog, in which Fidler referred to himself as a “bacon and eggs kind of Jew.”
On Friday, Brooklyn Republicans were quick to congratulate Storobin on his victory. Congressman Bob Turner (D-Brooklyn/Queens), said, “Brooklyn and Republican is no longer a non sequitur. With the election of David Storobin there are now five elected Republicans in Kings County, and there is a principal reason why: Voters are demanding fiscal accountability from their leaders and Republicans are providing it.”
And Russell Gallo, president of the Brooklyn Young Republicans, said, “Congratulations to state Senator David Storobin, Brooklyn Republican Chairman Craig Eaton, the Brooklyn GOP and all of the Brooklyn Young Republicans on another earth-shattering win.”
Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny (D-Coney Island/Dyker Heights), also a Russian-American, told the Eagle that Storobin’s win was a “good thing for the [Russian-American] community” as a whole because it will “energize the community politically.”
On the issue of why many Russians vote Republican, he said it was due to “a lack of understanding.” “There is a trend in the Russian community,” he said, “that the younger they are, the more Democratic and liberal they will become.”
Kruger, who represented his district since 1994, resigned in December after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and bribery conspiracy.