Tuesday, September 30, 2014

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Democratic State Senator to caucus with republicans

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Albany/HV: Democratic State Senator to caucus with republicans
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Ballots are still being counted in some of the State Senate races, but on Tuesday, we got a development in the battle for power as one Democrat announced he is going to caucus with Republicans. Capital Tonight's Liz Benjamin has more for us now.

NEW YORK STATE -- A shakeup in the State Senate. Conservative Brooklyn Democrat Senator-elect Simcha Felder says he's caucusing with Republicans next year.

Felder met with Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos before making the announcement.

Felder’s party switch has implications for the balance of power in the Senate. His move raises the GOP’s total seats to 31, one vote shy of the 32 necessary to control what will be a 63 seat chamber come January 1st.

Senator Dean Skelos released a statement about Felder's defection, saying, "I am very pleased to welcome Senator-elect Simcha Felder to the Senate Republican Conference. Senator-elect Felder will be a valuable member of our conference as we work to address the concerns raised by his community and continue to move this state forward."

A spokesman for Senate Democrats meanwhile, said , “The voters sent a clear message on election night that they want the Senate led by a Democratic Majority. We are confident that when the Senate convenes in January, there will be that Democratic Majority and we look forward to working with Governor Cuomo to achieve the progressive agenda he has laid out.”

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