Let the Governor's Race Begin
Congratulations to US Congressman Lee Zeldin on winning the Republican primary; and to Governor Kathy Hochul on winning the Democratic primary for Governor.
Both candidates' strong wins demonstrated a solid level of support within their respective parties.
Their defeat of strong rivals also speaks to where their respective parties stand in the election.
Zeldin defeated a highly-successful former Westchester County Executive, Rob Astorino; and the son of a famous Republican officeholder, Andrew Giuliani. But neither could match Zeldin's record to challenging - and beating - strong Democratic incumbents. Zeldin is a mainstream Republican, whose strong vote all across New York - he won counties from Erie (Buffalo) to Manhattan to Nassau and Suffolk - was impressive.
Hochul defeated two strong leaders who represent the opposite wings of their party: NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, a "socialist" and street agitator; and Tom Suozzi, who is a national leader of the moderate wing of the Democratic Party. Hochul, who served as Andrew Cuomo's Lt Governor, has now established herself as a viable contender.
And the differences between the two could not be greater.
Hochul supported the "no bail" reforms that have unleashed so many violent criminals on our neighborhoods. And her severe "lock down" policies destroyed over 1 million businesses in New York. She one again - just last week - declared a "state of emergency" to continue her Covid emergency powers. And she forced schoolchildren to wear face masks - after Cuomo had lifted the requirement - crippling a generation of kids for no better reason than her need to pander to the powerful teacher's unions.
This race should be about the economic future of New York - and how to return New York to "normalcy" and prosperity. But Hochul has already declared that she wants to make the race about "guns and abortion" - claiming that Zeldin, who grew-up on Long Island, is not a "real" New Yorker. Such attacks are nonsense, but are unfortunately what passes for political "debate" these days.
Let's hope that the candidates - and the media - focus on real issues of importance to real New Yorkers. Over 2 million New Yorkers have moved-away over the past five years. A terrifying number - that indicates that something is very wrong in New York. This might be our last chance to save it.