Despite being officially designated as the Republican candidate for Southampton Town Supervisor in the upcoming November 5th election, recent developments may mean that Linda Kabot will still have to face a member of the Conservative Party in a primary.
Kabot recently filed the necessary petitions with the Board of Elections to seek ballot placement on the Conservative Party line for the upcoming election. Her petition reached the necessary threshold, garnering over 60 signatures from registered Conservative voters. Collecting signatures, however, isn’t enough to guarantee a spot on the Conservative ballot. Because Kabot is not registered with the Conservative Party, the party chairman must file a “Wilson-Pakula” authorization with the Board of Elections to approve Kabot’s inclusion on the ballot.
The deadline for submitting a Wilson-Pakula authorization was July 15, and that deadline came and went without Kabot’s petition receiving the party chairman’s approval. The Conservative Party has instead named Howard Heckman of Eastport as their candidate for Supervisor, but this proposal has only lead to further complications. The Heckman petition had received a total of 40 signatures (36 signatures are required for Heckman to be included on the ballot) when it was submitted, but Linda is challenging the eligibility of 11 signatures, including the signatures of 6 voters who had already signed Kabot’s original petition.
Linda is still fighting to represent the Conservative line, claiming that the refusal to grant her a Wilson-Pakula authorization disenfranchises the voters who supported her. She filed an objection to the Board of Elections against the Heckman petition and submitted another petition to be featured as a write-in candidate for the Conservative Party primary on September 10.
“Conservative voters want a candidate on the ballot on the Conservative line,” she said in a statement. “It is disconcerting that the decision for cross-endorsement via Wilson-Pakula authorizations sometimes seems to be not rooted in party principles and credentials but rather the politics of payback, power-plays, ego, and horse-trading.”