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Vote Now: Where Should Roll Call Travel for the Midterm Elections?

New York - 4th District

Incumbent -- Carolyn McCarthy (D) ; Running for re-election

Likely Democratic
Race Ratings Key
 
 

District Information

District Profile from Politics in America

The Long Island-based 4th extends east from the Queens border to take in southwest and west-central Nassau County. The district combines wealthy white-collar suburbanites, some of whom still commute to Wall Street, with some low- and middle-income residents.

Bordered roughly by Interstate 495 in the north, the 4th picks up numerous midsize communities and includes a small portion of Long Island's Atlantic Ocean coastline in Atlantic Beach. Hempstead is home to Hofstra University's 240-acre campus, which continues to drive Hempstead's economy. Construction of a new medical school opening in 2011 has brought jobs and boosted the college's impact. Many local officials and residents hope that redevelopment of the area surrounding the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, home of hockey's New York Islanders, will bring jobs without exacerbating traffic issues.

Despite a decline in the defense industry that began two decades ago, defense technology companies still provide jobs here. A number of working-class residents are employed by John F. Kennedy International Airport (located nearby in the 6th District), Belmont Park race track or large shopping centers such as Garden City's Roosevelt Field Mall. Hospitals and health care facilities throughout the district also employ many area residents. Several years of job losses affecting residents who commute to Manhattan's financial sector hurt the local economy.

The 4th has the largest minority population of Long Island's four congressional districts and has a Democratic base, particularly in Hempstead and Uniondale, which include large black and Hispanic communities. The largely Jewish "Five Towns" (Inwood, Lawrence, Cedarhurst, Woodmere and Hewlett), in the 4th's southwestern corner, also lean Democratic. In local elections, the 4th favors some moderate Republicans, but Democrats win in federal and statewide races. Barack Obama took 58 percent of the district's 2008 presidential vote.

Major Industry

Health care, technology, higher education

Cities

Hempstead, 53,891; East Meadow (unincorporated), 38,132; Valley Stream, 37,511; Freeport (pt.), 34,408; Elmont (unincorporated), 33,198

Notable

In 1957, Adelphi University hosted the first National Wheelchair Games.

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