Republican Tea Party gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino is using his opposition to the Islamic center slated for construction near Ground Zero to raise campaign funds.
Paladino wrote the following e-mail, which is kind of a long, rambling message that focuses on a couple of issues: the Islamic center, Cuomo's record at HUD and, of course, the liberal media bias. He also refers to his Democratic opponent as "Young Cuomo" and "Andrew." The e-mail doesn't mention Mayor Bloomberg, a forceful supporter of the plan who Paladino took a shot at (which I thought was unwise for a number of reasons).
Paladino's email is after the jump. I'll update if I get a response from Cuomo's campaign.
I am opposed to an Islamic Mosque being built within the shadow of the Ground Zero--the site of the 9-11 attack on America. Where do you stand?
Incredibly, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who is a candidate for Governor, supports this proposed Islamic Mosque. I think this is an insult to every American murdered on September 11, 2001 and a painful insult to those who lost family members on that horrific day.
Those who proposed this Mosque belong to a sect of Islam which requires all who don't subscribe to this religion be killed. Where is the "tolerance" the liberals who support this mosque's construction speak of?
Now the respected Jewish Anti-Defamation League has come out against the Mosque construction. Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani has also come out strongly against the proposed Mosque calling it "a desecration."
Have we lost our minds? This is meant to be a monument to those who attacked America. It makes a mockery of those who died only two blocks away.
I intend to stop the construction of this Mosque.
As a developer and attorney with 40 years experience in land use issues, I believe the Governor has the legal power to use the State's power of eminent domain to seize this site and make it a war memorial.
I have consulted some of the top land-use attorneys in New York State and all agree - this proposal can be halted by a strong Governor with the courage to stop it. That is exactly what I will do. In fact, lawyers I have consulted think this may be the only way to stop the Mosque from rising in the shadow of the 9-11 attacks on America.
Sadly, Andrew Cuomo supports the Mosque proposed near the 9-11 site and says it's a matter of religious freedom. He is wrong. But the liberal media is convinced he will be our next Governor.
This isn't about religion or race. Islamic extremism is a hate-based ideology that would kill all who don't subscribe to their beliefs.
Stopping the proposed Mosque near Ground Zero is not the only reason I am running for Governor.
New York is choking on high taxes, special interests protect outrageous wasteful spending, the state is $60 billion in debt, our schools are failing, and the state is hemorrhaging jobs. Corrupt politicians are stealing us blind.
I am running to drive from office the political hacks running our state and bring real reform to Albany. Won't you join us by making a contribution to this vital effort today?
As a businessman, I have the management skills to turn New York around. As an attorney, I know all the tricks the lawyers in Albany use to maintain the status quo. As a Tea Party activist I know the answer to our economic crisis is cutting taxes, cutting regulation and slashing spending - all to create jobs.
Like Andrew Cuomo, I have a record to run on. But unlike Andrew Cuomo, my record is one of creating jobs for New Yorkers, keeping a budget, and making a payroll for hundreds of employees in my company.
I built a $500 million dollar real estate development and management business from scratch. I'm a businessman, not a politician. I know how to operate on budget. I know how to meet a payroll. I have created hundreds of good paying jobs. I put a high premium on telling the truth.
Young Cuomo's record is also clear. As Bill Clinton's Secretary of Housing he pushed America into the sub-prime mortgage melt-down by setting overly aggressive and careless federal housing goals that cost taxpayers $2.4 trillion. Andrew tries to blame George Bush, but that's nonsense- the mortgages Andrew forced the government to buy had a built-in future increase in interest rates. Andrew Cuomo lit the fuse! Alan Greenspan says the sub-prime mortgage meltdown brought on the U.S. recession. Nice job, Andrew!
If your 401K is worth far less than it was- you can blame Andrew Cuomo.
Now Andrew is pandering to the liberal elites who support the proposed Mosque near the 9-11 site. Those proponents want to roll out their plans on September 11th and claim the Mosque will be finished by September 11, 2011 to show this is a celebration by extremist elements to mock the United States. Not if I am Governor!
I plan to serve one 4-year term as Governor without regard to politics, popularity or re-election. I will make government smaller, more effective and more efficient. I will return control of government to the people. I will take on the public employees unions to cut the rich pension and benefit packages taxpayers can no longer afford to fund.
I will carefully review every Department, Agency and Authority of government and every government program for effectiveness, efficiency, productivity, and need. And if it doesn't pass my tests, it will be closed forever.
I have a very specific and comprehensive plan to revive New York's economy:
- I will cut taxes 10%;
- I will cut spending by 20% by eliminating waste, fraud and government programs that aren't working;
- I will cancel pension benefits and free health care for state legislators;
- I will impose 8 year term limits for all state elected offices including the legislature;
- I will institute a one-year residency requirement before anyone can receive welfare payments;
- I will re-negotiate the fat public employee pension deals that have literally driven us to the brink of bankruptcy;
- I will appoint a Special Prosecutor to investigate and prosecute corruption in the State Legislature and give him the subpoena power to get at the facts.
I have no illusions about how difficult it will be to force this package of reforms through the dysfunctional and corrupt New York State Legislature. The people of New York must demand these reforms so our legislators understand there will be consequences for their inaction.
I can't do it alone. Can I count On You to Help Take Back Our Government? Democrat Andrew Cuomo has $25 Million dollars in special interest campaign contributions filling his war chest. Observers expect him to raise another $30 Million from lobbyists, bankers, investment houses, Wall Street insiders, law firms, insurance companies, and all those interested in maintaining the status quo in Albany.
While I have pledged to spend up to $10 Million of my own money, it will take far more if we are going to defeat the entrenched liberal special interests who have a stranglehold on our government.
That's why I am asking you to make a contribution to Paladino For the People today. I wish I could do it alone and while I have been blessed by my success in business, I cannot compete with the multi-billion dollar special interests and public employees unions who like dysfunctional New York government just the way it is.
Together you and I can rally those New Yorkers who are fed-up and ready for radical reform. My campaign must raise an additional $250,000 in the next two weeks to keep our campaign plan on schedule.
Won't you send an emergency contribution today? I'm doing my part, will you do yours? Will you rush me your maximum possible contribution?
Will you help me save New York State?
The proposed mosque at Ground Zero can be stopped. Taxes and spending can be cut, and corruption can be swept from Albany- if you will help me.
You can use your Visa or MasterCard to make a contribution now. Won't you send $200, $100, $75 or $50? Even a contribution of $25 would be a big help.
Together we can defeat the bosses of the political establishment in their attempt to saddle our party with a weak nominee. We can defeat Andrew Cuomo and the liberal special interests who hope to make him Governor.
I would not be running and spending my own money if I didn't think I could win but I cannot do it alone. Please help our campaign with a contribution today.
I will be checking for your response online. Please let me hear from you today,
Carl P. Paladino
Candidate for Governor
P.S. Like many in the Tea party movement, I am being attacked by the liberals who fear the tide of reform sweeping New York. Ignore these distractions; 2010 is the year we take back our government and turn New York around. Now that I am openly opposing a Mosque near Ground Zero I expect the personal attacks to grow louder. I don't care. This is a fight worth winning. Please let me hear from you today.