In Latest Campaign Episode, Paladino Says He Likes Queens and Staten Island–But Not Brooklyn
Newsflash: Carl Paladino’s campaign is in damage control mode yet again.
And this time, it’s personal.
When I didn’t think it was possible to make Rick Lazio look any better, his eccentric gubernatorial opponent, who previously sent out emails featuring bestiality, porn and racism via his email account, dissed Brooklyn and two other NYC boroughs during a campaign stop, giving preference to Staten Island and Queens.
Yes, some of us have questioned Mr. Paladino’s sanity before. Others have favored anyone but Lazio. But now that Mr. Paladino has essentially insulted about 30% of the state’s population here in New York City, I think it’s time those of us who had any doubts finally said: “This man is truly mad as hell.”
Here is the story as reported by NY1:
Republican Carl Paladino’s campaign for governor was in damage control mode on Saturday, as it was trying to downplay critical remarks the candidate made upstate earlier in the week about New York City.
During a campaign stop in Hornell, N.Y. on Tuesday, Paladino said he liked Queens and Staten Island because they are just like upstate New York. He then said, “That leaves Manhattan, the Bronx and Brooklyn, and they can have them.”
Paladino’s campaign manager Michael Caputo said that the candidate was responding to a question about the logistics of traveling in New York City, and not what he thought of the three boroughs, which are home to 30 percent of New York State’s population.
Last month, the Buffalo businessman was quoted as saying negative remarks about the residents of Manhattan in a newspaper profile.
Speaking on NY1’s “Inside City Hall” this past Monday, Paladino defended those comments.
“I’m talking about the ruling elite, that’s where they’re from. This ruling class of people, no matter what the party, are all from Manhattan,” said Paladino. “They’re smug, they’re elitist, they’re wealthy, they have guilt for the wealth they have accumulated and they want the downtrodden, they want them taken care of, but not on their nickel.”
Paladino, who made a trip to the Bronx just last month, has been rising in the polls.
He faces off against former Long Island Congressman Rick Lazio in the GOP primary on September 14.
Does the Paladino campaign ever do anything but make excuses for the controversies they engender? Insulting three of the five boroughs of the greatest city in the world is not a great way to earn votes. Not to mention, this upstate/downstate feud is so foolish and represents the dumbest kind of old school New York State politics.
But wait: Michael Caputo’s response to the media coverage is that the question was regarding “traveling in New York City.”
Now, even if I believed that, (and no offense to our readers from our northern neighbor) how exactly is Queens more navigable than Brooklyn? Winding roads and jagged streets are what I always think of when I drive into Queens to catch a Mets game or go shopping.
And Staten Island? Lacking a car is considered a mortal sin out there.
So, I don’t necessarily buy Mr. Caputo’s schlocky story regarding the content of the question or (more likely) Mr. Paladino’s goals by answering the way he did. To say “they can have them” just doesn’t make sense.
But then again, we are talking about Carl Paladino.
When has he ever made sense?