Astorino: I’ll Stand With Cuomo

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Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino, a Republican, said this morning that he’s told Andrew Cuomo that he has the incoming Democratic governor’s back if Cuomo pursues the type of spending cuts he talked about during the gubernatorial campaign.

Cuomo, of course, is one of Astorino’s constituents since he lives in Mount Kisco. He said he talked to Cuomo a few weeks ago.

“I said to him, ‘Look you’re going to need some political cover. I’m a Republican in a big county. If you do the things you say you want to do, I will be there with you, standing right next to you and I think that will be good for you to have a Republican by your side,'” Astorino said on Fred Dicker’s radio show on Talk 1300-AM in Albany.

Astorino said Cuomo will be challenged to buck the special interests that supported his run for governor, but Astorino said he was able to get elected in Westchester last year without union support.

Astorino backed Republican candidate Carl Paladino for governor, and the county executive said Paladino raised important issues during the campaign, despite his controversial remarks and gaffes.

“If Carl Paladino had just talked about the things he should have been talking about, he would have had a much better chance. I think he was very serious about what he meant to do here,” Astorino said, adding that Paladino’s talk of cutting state spending pushed Cuomo to do the same.

He implored Republicans in state government next year to stick to GOP principles and cut government spending.

“They were born with tusks, they better ask like elephants, because if they trade those in for a horn of a RINO (Republican in Name Only) than they should be thrown out of office,” he said.

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