Rep. Robert Turner (R-N.Y.) confirmed Tuesday that his was one of about 80 homes that burned down in a New York City neighborhood Monday evening as the “superstorm” Sandy came ashore.
Turner, who succeeded former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) in a special election last year, lives in Breezy Point, a section of Queens that lost several homes overnight.
“I am grateful that my family and I are safe after this destructive storm,” Turner said in a statement issued by his office. “I hope you will join me in lending a hand to those who were less fortunate and keep everyone impacted by this storm in your thoughts and prayers.”
Turner said he was primarily concerned with the fates of other New Yorkers: “Last night’s storm showed once again that the professionalism and bravery of our first responders is second to none. I want to commend the men and women who put their lives on the line everyday in order to keep others safe.”
“Times like these create tremendous obstacles,” he added. “However, by working together we will ensure that the power is restored and our neighborhoods are rebuilt.”
Turner opted to run this year against Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), but lost the GOP primary. His district was eliminated by redistricting, thus ending his short congressional career.
He is not the first lawmaker to suffer from a natural disaster: Former Rep. Gene Taylor (D-Miss.) saw his home destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and became an advocate for homeowners’ insurance reform before losing his seat in 2010.
Follow Ed O’Keefe on Twitter: @edatpost