Written by Rich Forestano Friday, 10 August 2012 00:00
The New Hyde Park resident put the speculation to bed on Aug. 1. Standing on the steps of the Nassau County Supreme Court Building in Mineola, Scaturro, 40, announced his intention to run on the Conservative Party line against incumbent Democrat Rep. Carolyn McCarthy.
McCarthy (D-Mineola) stands to benefit from the continued Becker-Scaturro divide. When Becker lost to McCarthy in 2010, he had the Conservative line, which gave him 9,455 votes. Becker that year also got 2,940 votes as candidate of the Independence Party, which now backs McCarthy this time.
“Every step of the way, the leadership of the [Republican] party decided to destroy what we were trying to build,” Scaturro stated. “Mr. Becker’s candidacy was not something that even he contemplated and he admitted to both me and the press that when he was picked in 2010, he wasn’t thinking about Congress. There is where the fault lies for whatever advantage Carolyn McCarthy has been given. We saw how 2010 played out. That’s one reason 2012 cannot come from the same playbook.”
Scaturro complained that Becker had called him an “ultraliberal” and edited out Scaturro’s American flag pin in campaign material sent out before June’s GOP primary won by Becker. In the mailer, Becker said Scaturro “worked with and for” former Senator Arlen Specter, who switched from Republican to Democrat in 2009.
“He’s becoming defensive in having worked for Arlen Specter,” Becker stated. “The only thing we know is he worked for him and bolted from the Republican Party and was one of the deciding votes for ObamaCare. [Scaturro] apparently also wrote a book with [Specter] and now he’s trying to distance himself from his mentor? That’s a little bit disingenuous of him.”
Scaturro said he worked for the Senate Judiciary Committee when Specter was chairman and then ranking member and he has spoken to Specter only once since he resigned from the committee in 2009.
“[Becker] lied to the people he seeks to represent and brought disgrace upon himself and the Republican Party,” said Scaturro.
“I think voters are smart enough to know that a vote for Frank Scaturro is a vote for Carolyn McCarthy,” Becker said. “The party is not even paying attention to him because of the lack of support he gets. This is the way he stamps his feet to get the attention of others and the leadership of the party.”
When questioned on specific issues in the 4th district, most notably airplane noise and losing jobs, Scaturro noted several hearings and talks that have occurred and that more discussion needs to occur. The FAA may relocate its air traffic control facility in Westbury to upstate New York, taking 900 jobs off Long Island in the process. Reps. Carolyn McCarthy, Peter King, Steve Israel and Tim Bishop along with members of the region’s aviation, business, labor and educational communities recently called on the FAA to cancel its possible one-way trip off Long Island.
“I was at these forums,” Scaturro said. “Fran Becker, I don’t think, attended these forums. Carolyn McCarthy to the best of my knowledge did not attend these forums. I did. I have experienced stonewalling from government bureaucracy, as the FAA has neglected to give a straight answer on what that will do.”
According to congressional staffers, McCarthy voted against the new “JFK wrap” procedure making westbound departing flights take off over Nassau County before turning around, and stood against the FAA reauthorization for its lack of an environmental impact study to reduce noise.
“I welcome Mr. Scaturro to the race and am sure that voters will see clear distinctions between each of our records and visions for how to make sure that Long Island enjoys the prosperity and equality that we as a nation strive for,” McCarthy said.