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Tom Quixote

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Suozzi, of course, swears he is going to win this one. Last Sunday, he hosted a fund-raiser on the grounds of the Glen Cove Mansion, an estate not unlike the one his grandfather worked on. Suozzi, clad in khakis, a white polo shirt, and sandals, led the kids in a spirited egg-toss contest while his parents cheered Italy on to a World Cup victory on a wide-screen television.

After the game, Suozzi took the microphone and spoke to the crowd. His father and mother went onto the stage and told how they were driving around the state in an RV visiting seniors on his behalf. Suozzi then related a story about his brother Jim, who, he said, is often mistaken on the street for his politician brother. After telling the story, Suozzi did a double-take. “How many people have heard that story before?” Half the hands went up. Suozzi laughed. “Don’t let me get away with that.”

He then announced a grassroots idea so hokey and sweet I wanted to go up and pinch his cheek. “It’s call the Who program,” said Suozzi. He then made owl noises. “You know, ‘Who, who, who is Tom Suozzi?’ If each of you here can convince 25 people to vote for me, we can win this.”

After Suozzi finished, he shook hands and kissed babies. I walked over to say good-bye and wish him well. Without prompting, he told me, “I can do this.” He promised me if he won, he’d sing his father’s song one more time. Tom Suozzi then put one finger in his right ear to block out the band and sang a few bars.

“Suozzi, you know he’ll do his best / Suozzi, he always passes the test / So remember, in November / To vote for Suozzi because he’s the best.”


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