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What you need to know for 01/21/2018

Final tallies show wide margins of victory in judicial district races

Final tallies show wide margins of victory in judicial district races

Voters in the 3rd and 4th judicial districts were decisive in their selections Tuesday, electing jus

Voters in the 3rd and 4th judicial districts were decisive in their selections Tuesday, electing justices by substantial margins in both.

In the 3rd Judicial District, which includes Albany, Rensselaer and Schoharie counties, Rensselaer County District Attorney Richard J. McNally took the open Supreme Court judgeship, beating out Greene County Attorney Carol Donnelly-Stevens and Albany County Family Court Judge W. Dennis Duggan.

In the 4th Judicial District, which comprises Schenectady and Montgomery counties and points north, voters re-elected state Supreme Court Justice Thomas Nolan and electing Washington County Court Judge Stan Pritzker to the Supreme Court bench. Trailing them was Schenectady County Family Court Judge Mark Powers.

The final results were not reported in Wednesday’s edition of The Daily Gazette because final tallies were not complete late Tuesday.

The winners now receive 14-year terms. Supreme Court justices hear a variety of cases, both civil and criminal.

In the 4th Judicial District, Nolan was the top vote-getter, pulling in more than 105,000 votes across the 11-county district, according to a count by the Gazette of unofficial results posted by boards of elections in each county.

Pritzker took the second seat with more than 92,000 votes. Powers came in third with just less than 70,000 votes. Nolan and Pritzker ran on the Republican and Conservative lines, while Powers ran on the Democratic line.

“I’m just thankful so many people decided to vote for me,” Nolan said Wednesday evening. Nolan, 64, of Saratoga Springs, was first elected to the court in 1999.

Pritzker, 56, echoed Nolan’s comments, saying he was “just thrilled” at the results. “I’m just really fortunate to be able to take on this job,” he said.

Pritzker’s Washington County judgeship will become vacant. How it will be filled was unclear Wednesday. It could remain vacant for as much as a year and be filled by an election next November.

Powers called Nolan and Pritzker to congratulate them Wednesday morning.

“They’re both fine individuals, and they’ll do well,” he told The Gazette Wednesday evening.

Powers, 58, will continue in his current position as Schenectady County Family Court judge. His term there runs another eight years.

In last year’s 4th Judicial District race, four judgeships were up for election. The last seat wasn’t settled for nearly two months, with the winner, John Ellis, claiming victory by a mere 70 votes.

In the 3rd Judicial District, McNally, who ran on the Democratic and Independence lines, came in first with just more than 99,000 votes, according to a Gazette tally of unofficial results in the seven-county district.

Stevens came in about 22,000 votes behind, with just more than 76,500. Duggan came in a distant third with 9,594.

“I’m very gratified by the results,” McNally, 52, said, “and I look forward to taking on the challenge of being on the bench.”

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