Lee Zeldin slams Kathy Hochul’s subway crime plan as he rushes into government race

A surging Lee Zeldin slammed Governor Kathy Hochul’s last-minute criminal plan on the subway as the New York governors’ neck and neck race entered its home stretch.

« Why is Kathy Hochul waiting until after the first poll that says we’re ahead – two and a half weeks before the election – before doing this? » the Republican asked the Post as he left a rally in Rockaway Beach.

« She should have just done the right thing from the start, » he said.

Zeldin ridiculed Hochul’s plan, announced Saturday with Mayor Eric Adams, to flood subways with cops and cameras, and create two new inpatient units at psychiatric centers with 50 new beds to help get people out emotionally disturbed from the subway system.

« How out of touch are you if you think providing 50 beds is going to solve this problem? » Zeldin asked. « She says nothing about cashless bail…nothing about prosecutors refusing to enforce the law. »

The latest poll, released on Friday, puts Zeldin in a stalemate with Hochul, a Democrat.

The independent poll of 1,056 likely voters showed Zeldin with 45.6% support and Hochul at 45.3% – as well as 9% undecided, a worrying sign for any incumbent.

The survey had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.31 percentage points.

Seemingly in response to the increasingly tight race, Hochul pledged to increase cops and cameras in city subways and released a new campaign ad on Friday focusing on crime – a major issue for voters that the governor had hitherto practically ignored.

Zeldin and Alison Esposito speak in Queens on Saturday.
MTN News

« You deserve to feel safe, and as your governor, I won’t stop working until you do, » she promises in the spot.

Voters who gathered at a previous Zeldin rally in Whitestone, Queens on Saturday, like Bayside’s Howard and Edythe Schaerf, applauded Zeldin’s crime-fighting platform.

« I’m 80 and bought a box of mace, » Howard said. « I never thought the day would come when this would happen. »

Supporters gather at Francis Lewis Park.
Supporters gather at Francis Lewis Park for the Zeldin event on Saturday.
Kevin C. Downs for NY Post
Rep. Zeldin
Representative Zeldin is gaining ground in the polls.
MTN News

« We want to fire Hochul, » Edythe added.

About 175 supporters at Francis Lewis Park chanted “Lee! Li! Lee” as a Long Island congressman took to the microphone and blamed Hochul for the thousands of New Yorkers who have left the state in recent months.

“The reason everyone is reaching their breaking point and running away is because those responsible have attacked wallets, security and freedom,” Zeldin said.

Once elected, Zeldin said he would act « within the first 100 minutes to save New York ».

« The first thing we have to do, day one as soon as we get there, is tell Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg he’s fired, » he said to cheers.

Lee Zeldin and others at the rally
Former Republican gubernatorial candidate Andrew Giuliani gestures to Zeldin at the rally in Queens.
MTN News

He vowed to declare a statewide “criminal emergency” to end the state legislature and “unilaterally suspend cashless bail and other pro-criminal laws they passed.”

He also pledged to end « any proposed COVID vaccine mandate, in elementary school, higher education, employment or otherwise » – calling for the CDC’s vote this week to add the vaccine to the childhood immunization schedule.

“No one should have been fired for what is a personal decision,” Zeldin said. « Kathy Hochul…she thinks she’s your mother, she actually said that out loud. »

At least a dozen Zeldin street signs dotted the park’s sidewalk and grass, and cars parked along Third Avenue displayed American flags, Zeldin banners, and pennants bolstering the military and forces of the United States. order.

André Giuliani
Giuliani lost to Zeldin in the GOP primary.
Kevin C. Downs for NY Post

Nearby, an SUV sported bumper stickers reading “Vote Red” and “Catch the red wave New York,” while an elderly attendee strolled through the park with a Zeldin sign taped to his wheeled walker.

Russell Schneider, 29, a Long Island entrepreneur, and Upper East Sider Nick Rafael, 28, who works in corporate finance, agreed that crime was their big problem.

« If we don’t win, I don’t know if New York will be the same, » Schneider said. « Crime will get worse…Quality of life will get worse, which is going to be scary. »

« You see the news, the frequency of people getting pushed onto the slopes, it could be any of us, » Rafael worried.


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