Flame-throwing Republican Carl Paladino is within striking distance of overtaking longtime gubernatorial frontrunner Andrew Cuomo, a shocking new poll finds, according to our State Capitol Bureau Chief, Ken Lovett.Other polls show a greater gulf between the two candidates but the fact it is a contest at all is simply astonishing. Cuomo, presently the state's attorney general, has been considered a shoo-in by most pundits (and has acted that way) while Paladino is regarded as a gadfly (to put it politely) at best. He recently attacked Cuomo as not having "cojones" for refusing to debate him and described Manhattan as "home to smug, self-important, pampered liberal elitists" (having lived in Manhattan for many years, I can concur) and that he would "send state police into the city and 'every other sanctuary city in the state to pick up illegals [sic] and turn them over to the feds.'"
Among likely voters, Democrat Cuomo has a paltry 49% to 43% lead over Paladino, the maverick Buffalo businessman who won a shocking and decisive victory last week in the GOP primary against Rick Lazio, the Quinnipiac University poll finds.
The leaders of New York's Republican Party, the wimpiest Republican organization in all the land, are naturally appalled by all of this and advising other candidates to keep Paladino at "arm's length." They may come to regret that.