Heather Hamilton has hardly changed a thing in Long’s Wines & Liquors since she purchased the Bay Ridge booze shop from state Conservative Party Chair Mike Long in March — but there’s one big difference: and it ain’t the wine selection.
Longtime Long’s employees continue to work their shifts and the right-wing boss’s name still graces the Fifth Avenue marquee, but the liquor shop is no longer a conservative salon.
“I’m definitely more liberal than Mike,” said Hamilton, a Park Slope resident. “To keep this place open to everyone, I try to keep politics to a minimum.”
And that’s made it tough this election season for Bay Ridge conservatives and Republicans, coming on top of a string of letdowns including Rep. Vito Fossella’s drunk-driving conviction and subsequent retirement, and the failed campaigns by GOPers Bob Straniere (Congress), Bob Capano (Assembly) and Joe Cammarata (Assembly).
Bay Ridge righties miss having a room of their own.
“I remember going in there and sitting on wine boxes and talking with Mike about politics, government, and the issues of the day,” reminisced Capano, who earlier this month netted just 30 percent of the vote in his race against Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny (D–Dyker Heights).
Though Long was reluctant to quit after 25 years, the conservative honcho is happy that he’s out of the booze biz.
“I’m spending more time with family and I’m spending more time at headquarters,” said Long, who was known for fielding calls from the liquor store — at any hour of day.