Sparks Fly at NY GOP Gubernatorial Debate as Wilson & Zeldin Trade Barbs - The Jewish Voice
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Saturday, June 10, 2023

Sparks Fly at NY GOP Gubernatorial Debate as Wilson & Zeldin Trade Barbs

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By: Don Driggers

Republicans called out anti-Semitism and the hypocrisy of the far left at the recent NY Gubernatorial Republican primary debate. “We have anti-Semitism right now inside of schools, not just in the halls of Congress,” the Long Island Republican businessman Harry Wilson said in a veiled reference to controversial squad member Rep. Ilhan Omar.

Retired executive Rob Astorino, of Westchester, said, “most people understand that racism is a problem. and we should confront it and we are. But things like CRT which is seeping everywhere, is obviously [where [ you divide people and tell people: ‘You’re bad. You’re a racist,” Astorino said when asked to what degree he wants racism taught in schools.”

The other three candidates for the Republican nomination for Governor of New York are Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-Suffolk) and Andrew Giuliani, son of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

The sparks flied at this debate, frequently all 4 candidates talked at once making it hard to understand what was being discussed.

When the issue of Trump came up, “I believe that President Trump was reelected. And I think unfortunately, we’ve seen one of the greatest crimes in American history committed against our country,” Giuliani said.

“Certainly, Joe Biden was a duly elected president of the United States,” Wilson said when asked his take on the Jan. 6 hearings dismissed by some Republicans as Democratic stunt.

They all agreed that Democrats move to defund the police is a terrible idea expressed a desire to be tougher on crime. Zeldin, the current front-runner according to polls, for requiring unanimity from the state parole board, rather than a majority vote, before convicted people could be released while joining his rivals in calling for the repeal of bail reform while giving judges more discretion to jail people over public safety concerns.

“We are soft on crime, and we got to get back to what worked,” Astorino said.

“We have a job to try to find common ground, however possible and I don’t care if it’s a President Obama or President Trump, a President Biden or a Governor Cuomo – we have a responsibility to work together,” Zeldin said.

Giuliani had to appear virtually via Zoom he was not allowed to attend in person due to his refusal to be vaccinated against Covid-19. All the other candidates were fully vaccinated per the debate rules. Andrew’s key campaign message has been vaccine choice, which will once more take a spotlight as infants are now being encouraged to be vaccinated after CDC approval. Recently the other candidates have joined Giuliani with a similar vaccine choice stance.

“My kids are not vaccinated,” bragged Astorino while arguing such choices should be up to parents.

“This is something that’s very close to my heart … getting New Yorkers their job back – who have lost them – with back pay,” Giuliani, said while talking about workers fired for refusing the vaccine.

Meanwhile Wilson has been relentlessly attacked by his opponents because he proudly did not vote for Trump and his connections to Democrats such as Hillary Clinton.

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