GOP In Scrambles Over Gubernatorial Challenge To Gov. Cuomo


EdCoxAPWestchester County Executive Rob Astorino on Wednesday gave his strongest indication to date of his future political plans, telling a Binghamton radio show that he’s “leaning towards” challenging Governor Andrew Cuomo this year.

“I would say I’m leaning towards it,” said Astorino, a Republican. “But again, I want to go through the due diligence here and make sure the building blocks are there.”

Donald Trump, as reported yesterday, is flirting about a run but has demanded the Republican Party to unite behind him.

In an interview on Albany radio Wednesday morning, State GOP head Ed Cox noted that Mr. Trump dating back to 1990 has flirted with running for governor and president, only to ultimately stay on the sidelines.

Cox said he told Trump in a phone conversation a week ago that there is a “healthy degree of skepticism” among state Republicans that he is serious about running for governor this year. “That’s one of the reasons he needs to go through this process,” he said. “It would certainly hone his knowledge of the various regions of New York State and also put to rest that skepticism.”

On Tuesday, Mr. Astorino will attend a fundraiser for the state Republican Party in Albany, where he’ll be honored as a “Rising Star.” Mr. Trump, had innitinaly planned to attend the fundraiser as well, but declined after learning it was honoring Astorino.

“When Mr. Trump realized this afternoon that this event was a long-planned salute to Mr. Astorino, he demurred,” Caputo said in a statement. “He feels it is inappropriate for him to attend and disrupt an evening devoted to Mr. Astorino – in his perspective, that’s not a classy move. Instead, he is looking at other GOP events upstate.”

Meanwhile, former embattled Gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino issued a lengthy indictment of chairman Ed Cox, accusing him of trying to block a Donald Trump run for governor.

“Once a chairman who thought first about the Republican Party, he is now trying to go down in history as the Republican who ran off Donald Trump. We are defined by the decisions we make,” Mr. Paladino wrote in the memo sent to Party leaders and supporters.

“Cox had previously and publicly stated that there would be an open process for the nomination but he never vetted Rob to the Republican electorate. Cox just ‘assumed,’ as he did in 2010. Now, allied with Dean Skelos, Skelos Puppeteer Joe Mondello, master shoplifter Vinney Reda, Cuomo bird dog and greed driven lobbyist Al D’Amato, and other RINOs, Cox has sought to orchestrate Rob Astorino into a shallow, poorly funded campaign that he will certainly lose,” Paladino wrote.

“To all grassroots rank and file of the Republican and Conservative parties: get ready to mount up and ride to the sound of the guns. It’s Concord Redux. They have fired the first shots, this time at Donald Trump. A leader can’t walk between the raindrops. Make a decision Ed. Lead, follow or get out of the way,” he concluded.

Cox laughed off the attack email. “It doesn’t offend me,” Cox said Wednesday morning. “That’s Carl. I love him and i love what he’s doing in western New York, particularly on the school board. He’s doing a great job out there.”

(Jacob Kornbluh – YWN)


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