NY Democrats select former Rep. Tom Suozzi as nominee to fill George Santos seat

New York Democrats have selected former U.S. Rep. Tom Suozzi as the nominee for the special election to fill disgraced former Rep. George Santos's seat.

Suozzi, 61, represented the district for six years before launching an unsuccessful campaign for governor last year, and previously held political posts as a county executive and mayor on Long Island.

"We look forward to working with the Suozzi Campaign, and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee to restore integrity, competence, and a focus on the real needs of our larger community," the the Nassau County and Queens County Democratic Committees said in a joint statement.

 U.S. Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY) debates in the race for governor at the studios of WNBC4-TV June 16, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Craig Ruttle-Pool/Getty Images)

Suozzi's deep ties in Long Island politics may provide name recognition and the ability to quickly stand up a campaign — vital attributes in an narrowly focused election where voters will have a limited amount of time to pick their representative.

The centrist Democrat had announced his campaign for the seat before Santos was expelled, and has been promoting a series of endorsements from local politicians and labor groups after the district became vacant.

With Santos out of Congress, the special election to fill the Third Congressional District of New York seat has been set for Feb. 13.

The race for a seat representing some Long Island suburbs and a small part of the New York City borough of Queens is expected to be a high-profile contest that will mark the start of a year of consequential congressional elections in the state.

Both parties have zeroed in on New York as a battleground for the House.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.