WESTBURY - Will being a New Yorker give Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump an edge in the state's upcoming primary? News 12 Long Island's Rich Barrabi takes a look at how officials, pundits and voters are feeling about Trump and the other GOP candidates.
Thousands of Trump supporters packed Grumman Studios in Bethpage last week for a campaign rally, and political strategist Mike Dawidziak says Long Island Republicans will come out in big numbers for Trump again for the presidential primary on April 19.
"He is a native New Yorker and he is running in his home state, and he's very closely identified with New York state and New York City," Dawidziak says. "So I would assume he does nicely here."
The Trump campaign has become synonymous with bucking the political establishment, but Republican leaders on Long Island don't seem to mind. In fact, the chairmen of both the Nassau and Suffolk Republican committees have each endorsed Trump.
Longtime Nassau GOP chairman Joe Mondello says Trump has the ability to back up his brash rhetoric.
Some other Long Island Republicans say they are concerned that Trump's message is too harsh. Linda Anna, of West Hempstead, say she'll vote for Ohio Gov. John Kasich instead. Dennis Costa, also of West Hempstead, says that while he's still undecided, he's learning toward voting for Texas Sen. Ted Cruz.
When it comes to the delegate math, New York is not a so-called "winner take all" state. The delegates are largely allocated by the results in each individual congressional district, so the candidates continue to criss-cross the state, working to drum up support and votes where they can.