King wins race but loses Homeland Security post
Rep. Peter King, who won his race Tuesday but lost his powerful Homeland Security chairmanship, said yesterday he had reached out to his Democratic successor.
King (R-Seaford) defeated Democratic challenger David Mejias 97,279 to 76,943 votes - 56% to 44% - but had to give up the leadership of the committee as his party lost control of the House.
King had been the chairman of the committee for more than a year. In January, Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) is expected to take it over.
King acknowledged that his party took a beating nationwide in large part because of unhappiness over the Iraq war.
He said he already had called Thompson, and insisted that as the ranking minority Republican on the committee, he will still be in a position to help New York, even if it is in regional disputes against members of his own party on issues such as security funding for cities.
"As a Republican, I'll be able to deal with the administration. I can help with that, and also quite frankly against people in my own party, some of whom know the price of everything and the value of nothing," King said.