Republican candidate for governor Carl Paladino continued to harshly criticize his Democratic rival Andrew Cuomo Thursday, as he campaigned through Long Island before attending a Nassau County GOP rally.
Paladino spent the day meeting and greeting customers in a diner in Lindenhurst, N.Y., and while he stayed away from fierce rhetoric while discussing the issues, he still hinted that Cuomo was an integral part of Albany corruption.
"Come on! Andrew Cuomo is as much a part of this mess in Albany as everybody else. It's a criminal syndicate," said Paladino. "Half of the government is under indictment or investigation. What are we going to do with Andrew, huh? We're going to give Andrew a bus ticket. Next Tuesday, we're going to win."
Several diner customers, when asked whether Paladino had the right temperament to lead, did not feel that the issue deserved to be a major factor in the campaign.
"He's a little gruff but I like him," said a customer. "He's somebody who speaks from the heart, because he's not a politician, and I think that's what we need."
"I'm worried that the temperament invites very harsh criticism against the man. It detracts from the real issues at hand, and that's why probably Cuomo will do better than even he thought he would," said another.
Later in the day at a rally, Paladino stood side-by-side with other GOP candidates for statewide office, at times taking shots at their opponents. He even referred to New York's Junior Senator, Kirstin Gillibrand, as Charles Schumer's "little girl."
The Buffalo businessman wrapped up the day by attending a fundraiser hosted by the Nassau County Republican Party.
Cuomo, meanwhile, was upstate in Syracuse where he played to the crowd.
"I'm just plain sick and tired of hearing about the problems, especially of upstate New York, year after year after year, with nothing happening. I am just tired, I am tired of hearing businesses leave the State of New York," Cuomo said.
Current polls show the Democrat with a comfortable lead over Paladino.