From the Morning Memo:

It was a good night for Democrats in the 9th Assembly district on Long Island, where Christine Pellegrino scored an upset victory in a special election to fill the seat vacated by a Republican.

Labor groups had focused on flipping the seat, expanding the already behemoth Democratic majority in the state Assembly and adding another woman to the increasingly diverse conference.

Pellegrino ran in part on her resume as a teacher — and opposition to the Common Core education standards as she pushed for local control for standards.

“Christine’s message resonates – it’s time to send a teacher, mom and opt-out leader to Albany to make public education policy,” said NYSUT President Andy Pallotta. “She’s one of us and we’re very proud today. NYSUT volunteers made thousands of phone calls and knocked on countless doors to convince 9th District residents that Christine would put the community’s needs ahead of anything else – and they listened.”

Democrats in both chambers have sought to make gains in battleground Long Island districts over the last several election cycles. In the Senate, Democrats have gain two seats in suburban districts that had once been held by Republicans.

The hope for the party — out of power in Congress and the White House following a weak down-ballot performance nationally in 2016 — will gain amid potential backlash to President Donald Trump.

“Bold progressive populism that puts working people’s issues front and center — this is how we win in Trump country,” said Working Families Party State Director Bill Lipton. “This is an amazing night for the New York State United Teachers and the entire progressive movement.”