Republican challenger Lee Zeldin had the upper hand in Tuesday night’s debate against Gov. Kathy Hochul.
It’s unfortunate that less than 1% of New York voters where able to see the restricted cablecast.
“My opponent thinks that right now there’s a polio emergency going on but there’s not a crime emergency — different priorities than I’m hearing from people right now,” the outgoing congressman from Long Island said.
“They’re not being represented from this governor — who still, to this moment…hasn’t talked about locking up anyone committing any crimes,” Zeldin said about law-abiding citizens who are scared to go back to work in NYC.
Hochul strange response was, “Anyone who commits a crime, under our laws, especially with the changes we made to bail, has consequences.
“I don’t know why that’s so important to you,” the incumbent Democrat added. “All I know is that we could do more.”
Hochul seemed to walk back her Monday assertion that a series of “high-profile incidents” had “created a sense of fear in people’s minds.”
“I understand the fear. I walk the streets of New York City every day. I’ve taken the subways. This fear is real,” she said.
During an especially contentious back-and-forth, Hochul called Zeldin one of former President Donald Trump’s “strongest and most loyal supporters” and highlighted his House votes against certifying President Biden’s electoral victories in Arizona and Pennsylvania.
Zeldin fired back by noting how Hochul, after succeeding ex-Gov. Andrew Cuomo last year following his resignation over a sexual harassment scandal, appointed state Sen. Brian Benjamin (D-Manhattan) as her No. 2.
Zeldin called Benjamin “the architect of cashless bail” and referenced his indictment in an alleged campaign-finance fraud scheme.
“Yeah, that guy who got arrested and had to resign. That was her first big decision: to make him the lieutenant governor,” he said.
Zeldin in recent weeks has closed the gap that Hochul once enjoyed. Many polls now see the race as pick’em.