Former Republican New York Governor George Pataki was one of the surrogates backing Mitt Romney on “spin alley” after last night’s presidential debate at Hofstra. Politicker used the opportunity to ask Mr. Pataki which GOP candidates he thought might emerge to challenger the crowded field of Democrats who are likely to run for mayor in next year’s election. So far two political newcomers, Manhattan Media CEO Tom Allon and Doe Fund boss George McDonald, are the only ones who have declared their intentions to run on the Republican line, but Mr. Pataki indicated there may be other Republicans mulling a mayoral bid.
Former Gov. George Pataki, who made rumbles about running for president this year—before eventually dropping out of contention, doesn’t sound like he’s going to go through the same motions in four years. For the 2012 cycle, Mr. Pataki traveled to Iowa and even went so far as to build a campaign website for the bid, but in an interview on Capital Tonight down at the Republican National Convention in Florida, Mr. Pataki said he doesn’t “expect to run for public office” again.
Earlier this year, former Gov. George Pataki launched a Super PAC aimed at tilting the many competitive U.S. House races in New York toward the Republican Party. He claimed millions of dollars in pledges with expectations to raise “in the high seven figures,” or, “if things go well, in the low eight” in total funds. But he’s not close to that number so far, according to last month’s federal filing, he’s raised only $30,000, spending about $750 total. After a press conference endorsing Wendy Long’s senatorial campaign this morning, however, Mr. Pataki told The Politicker he still expects to make an impact.
“I’m still very hopeful,” he said of his donors coming through for his Super PAC endeavor. “The people aren’t focusing on the House races at this point, understandably, and I haven’t been because I have a lot that I’m working on. We have plans down the road. We’re going to do our best to hit the seven-figure mark and see what we can do.”
“Hit the seven-figure mark” seemed a bit less than the “high seven” to “low eight” he assured the Wall Street Journal he would raise, however, and we inquired about the lower sum.
President Barack Obama’s campaign is playing defense on his record of support for gay rights as fallout over Vice President Joe Biden’s comment he’s “absolutely comfortable” with same sex marriage continued for a second day. Mr. Biden’s remark led to criticism the president isn’t taking a firm position on gay marriage, most recently from former New York Governor George Pataki who blasted President Obama for “looking to have both sides” on the issue in an RNC conference call this morning. Ben LaBolt, the national press secretary for President Obama’s campaign fired back by characterizing the president as a strong supporter of the gay community and accusing Mr. Romney of planning to reverse progress the Obama administration has made on gay rights.
“Mitt Romney deployed Governor Pataki today to call for consistency on gay rights. Governor Pataki must not be familiar with either the President’s record or Governor Romney’s,” Mr. LaBolt said in a statement. “The President has done more to advance gay rights than any other president – from securing hospital visitation and medical decision-making rights for gay partners, to repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, to advancing equal rights and benefits for gays and lesbians.” Continue reading “Obama Campaign: ‘The President Has Done More to Advance Gay Rights Than Any Other President’”→
Former New York Governor George Paraki and New York Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox held a conference call with reporters this morning ahead of President Barack Obama’s visit to University at Albany’s College of Nanoscale Science & Engineering. Mr. Pataki claimed his emphasis on lower tax rates and de-regulation led to the creation of the school while President Obama’s policies have failed at spurring private sector development.
Though Messrs. Pataki and Cox focused on criticizing the president’s economic policies, they were also asked by Buzzfeed’s Zeke Miller about the uproar over Vice President Joe Biden’s comments in support of same sex marriage yesterday and the lingering questions about where President Obama stands on the issue.
In the middle of his media tour promoting his new Super PAC, former Governor George Pataki also took time to answer questions on the primary process and whether he should have entered the Republican presidential field himself on Inside City Hall last night.
The host, Errol Louis, first asked Mr. Pataki if the new rules that elongated the primary were a mistake.
“I don’t think so,” he replied. “After the fact, you look at it and say, ‘It lasted too long, there were too many candidates.’ But I think it was more of a function of the messaging and the candidates than the process itself.”