Lee Zeldin lays out case for bid for New York governor


New Yorkers, fed up with soaring state spending and rising crime, are nearing their “breaking points,” Rep. Lee Zeldin said, laying out his case for voters to elect a Republican to the governor’s mansion for the first time in two decades.

In an interview with The Washington Times’ columnist Michael McKenna, the four-term congressman from Long Island said people who talk to him about his governor’s run portray the election “as if this is the last stand, a last great opportunity to save our state.”

“New York is in bad shape and we have to save our state,” he said.

“They are getting close to their own breaking points. They are citing the high cost of living, not making enough to make ends meet, the rising crime, cashless bail, not supporting law enforcement enough, our kids not getting back in school in many places across the state,” he said.

The congressman said the state government’s recent approval of $2.1 billion in taxpayer money to pay benefits to illegal immigrants who’ve lost jobs during the pandemic is emblematic of the state’s derailment.

He said those who approved tax increases to fund the spending said it was “patriotic” for New Yorkers to pay up, to which Mr. Zeldin said, “we must live in the most patriotic state in the entire Republic because we’re getting taxed out of our homes.”

Asked about former President Donald Trump, Mr. Zeldin turned the conversation with Mr. McKenna back to state voters.

“I’m going to keep talking to real voters about the issues that they are telling me matter to them the most, and I’m confident that when you are looking to the fall of 2022, if you go knock on the door of an undecided voter and ask, ‘what are your top three issues/five issues/ten issues’ we’re going to find they are along the lines of what we’ve been talking about right now that I’ve been focused on and I will continue to stay focused on to save our state,” he said.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the incumbent Democrat, has been rocked by numerous accusations of sexual improprieties with staffers and other women, His handling of the coronavirus and the state’s nursing homes, including accusations of an official cover-up, is also facing investigation.

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