Assemblymember Nicole Malliotakis walked with her immigrant parents, George and Vera to the polls in for early voting in Staten Island on a rainy Monday afternoon amid a contentious race to unseat Democrat Max Rose in the 11th Congressional District.
While she seemed a bit nervous, her elderly parents beamed with pride, her father saying it was “part of their American dream” to see their daughter achieve elected office.
“I’m very proud of my daughter coming to this point today,” George Malliotakis said, both he and his wife immigrants from Greece. “I know she’s gonna win and I know she’s going to be the next Congresswoman in Washington, and believe me, I feel much, much taller because of her.”
The trio voted at P.S. 8, 112 Lindenwood Road in Great Kills Staten Island. Surrounded by a mass of media, Malliotakis remained calm and focused on her objective to vote early. Her mother left a box of chocolates for poll workers.
“It gives me great pride, this country is truly special as my parents came here as immigrants and found it had limitless potential and opportunity,” she said after casting her ballot.
She applauded the early voting and said it was good for the electoral process.
“There’s nothing more special to have the ability to elect our leaders and people are coming out in droves to have their voices heard. I’m extremely proud of this community, no matter what the outcome is,” she added.
As she left with her parents, people waved to her, one man yelling to her “see you in Washington, Nicole.”
Malliotakis has been locked in a fierce battle with Rose over the past few weeks, both sides trading accusations and barbs to sway voters. She commands a sizable Republican base in Staten Island, while Rose, a Democrat who has opposed many of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s policies, holds sway in Democratic Brooklyn.
Monday was the third day of early voting in this election cycle. Over the weekend, some 200,000 New Yorkers across the five boroughs got a chance to cast their ballots in the upcoming election. That’s nearly three times than all of the early voters who participated in the November 2019 election.