On October 13, 2010 one of the most famous and beloved political figures of New York politics again became active in an election race. Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch is known for having strong positions and even more strong words for those that oppose his positions or take them lightly. Such was the case as he stepped off the Democrat path to endorse George Phillips, a Republican, over the 18yr incumbent Rep. Maurice Hinchey (Dem).
Mayor Koch, at 85, was full of vigor and hadn’t lost any of his political skills as he not only announced his full fledged endorsement, but defended that endorsement as several news media reporters attacked his reasoning and motivation. To say the Mayor Koch was emphatic would be like saying he was breathing.
Mayor Koch outlined his reasons for his endorsement, which included the voting record of Rep. Maurice Hinchey and the fact that the Mayor has lost all belief in the promises of Rep. Hinchey. According to Mayor Koch, Rep. Hinchey is “not a friend of Jews”, is bad for national security, and more than willing to support partisan politics to help gerrymander the districts of New York to resist any challenger.
Mayor Koch was joined in Kingston and Newburgh, NY by Ronald Lauder. Mr. Lauder is a well known and highly respected businessman – of the Estée Lauder Companies family, former US ambassador to Austria, an honorary trustee of the World Monuments Fund, and creator of the Ronald S. Lauder Foundation.
Mr. Lauder also endorsed George Phillips, noting that he too could believe in Mr. Phillips. He also stated that he felt Phillips understood what was needed to bring jobs into New York State, whereas Rep. Hinchey was “lost”.
Mr. George Phillips is running for the 22nd Congressional district in New York against 18 year incumbent Representative Maurice Hinchey. Recent polling, before the endorsement event, placed Mr. Phillips within 7 points of the incumbent making the NY22 race one of the more controversial in the nation. It has drawn the attention of national 527 American Crossroads (no connection to the actual campign), which has announced dedicating $300,000 worth of advertising to help combat the warchest of Rep. Hinchey – estimated to be between $200,000 and $500,000 (not including funds raised from a last-minute effort by former President Bill Clinton).
The New York 22nd Congressional district is approx. the size of Connetticut, reaches from the towns of Ithaca to Poughkeepsie, and includes 8 counties. The population of the district is over 650,00 people.
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