For the first time in his 25-year political career, New York State Assemblyman Fred Thiele Jr. will run unopposed.
This week, challenger Jeremy Brandt, 36, of Hampton Bays, withdrew from the Assembly race.
Brandt, a registered Conservative, aimed to procure the support of the Suffolk County Republican Committee via a Wilson Pakula, a document in which a party grants its nomination to a non-member. However, Suffolk Republican Chairman John Jay LaValle refused to sign the document, which would have allowed Brandt to run on the Republican line.
By not signing the Wilson Pakula, LaValle left the Republicans without a candidate.
"For reasons unbeknownst to me, I did not get the support from the party chairman," Brandt said. "I have no ill will toward LaValle. I understand that it is a business decision and I can't speculate as to why the decision was made."
Prior to this week, Brandt said he had the support of East Hampton, Southampton and Brookhaven Republicans and had even procured more than triple the signatures required to run on the Republican line.
"This was a tough pill to swallow, but there will be other races," said Brant, a plumber who owns a business in Sag Harbor, where he grew up.
Brandt said he had high hopes of winning the Assembly seat to offer a voice to the working class people of the East End.
"I felt that our generation needed to be heard. Thiele has changed his stripes too many times and that is one thing that irritates me. He is a political opportunist."
Thiele, meanwhile, said he is looking forward to a stress-free campaign season, but said he does plan to get out and meet his constituents.
"My intent is to still campaign and talk to people about my accomplishments."
Those accomplishments, said Thiele, who is running for his ninth term, including helping to eliminate the MTA tax, ensuring that Stony Brook Southampton is operational, reducing taxes and creating an improved business climate.
"I feel have a good record," Thiele said.
Before joining the Assembly in 1995, Thiele was the supervisor of Southampton Town, and a Suffolk County legislator before that.
To find out what LaValle had to say, click here.