It was a day of firsts for City Comptroller candidate Eliot Spitzer, as he stumped at a subway station and attacked his Democratic rival in the race, and Scott Stringer is now returning fire. NY1's Josh Robin filed the following report.
Former New York governor Eliot Spitzer took to the campaign stump this morning at a Queens subway station and, for the first time, criticized Scott Stringer, his Democratic rival in the race for city comptroller.
He made the remarks in an exclusive interview with NY1's Josh Robin on an F subway train to Queens.
Spitzer was asked about Scott Stringer's comments that the former governor's time in Albany was dysfunctional, and he said he disagrees.
"Accomplishment after accomplishment that I could go on at length to discuss, and I'm not going to get into it, but I think for somebody who was up in Albany as a member of an Assembly during many years that did not a whole lot, I will compare my record and tenure as governor and my record and tenure as attorney general to anybody's record out there," Spitzer said.
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer served 13 years in the state legislature.
He's belittling Spitzer's 14 months atop Albany as something of a train wreck, well before word surfaced that the governor was sleeping with prostitutes.
"There was Troopergate, there was bad budgeting, there was anger management issues," Stringer said. "There was a whole host of issues that contributed to the dysfunction of Albany."
It's a time some may be willing to overlook, if the crowd at Tuesday's campaign event was an indication.
Spitzer pressed palms for 30 minutes, with crowds at worst indifferent and sometimes giddy.
"All of us sin," said one person at the event. "Don't care how small it is. We sin."
In all, the street scene was certainly calmer than Spitzer's first meet and greet in Union Square more than two weeks ago.
This time, Spitzer's team alerted the press less than an hour before he was scheduled to arrive, and it worked. There were fewer reporters and no hecklers.
The prostitution scandal is still drawing headlines, including reports that while in office, Spitzer invited himself to official events so he could see prostitutes.
"False, libelous defamatory," Spitzer said. "They know them to be false, libelous, defamatory. They've been told that, and it is a shame."
Stringer's surrogates use Spitzer's admitted time as a john as reason to vote against him. The candidate himself, though, said, "I just don't want to have a conversation about Eliot's troubles in that regard."
It seems like some voters don't, either. Spitzer didn't appear to face any questions on it.
Web Extra: Full Spitzer Interview 7/23/13
TWC News: NY1 Exclusive: Spitzer Greets Straphangers, Talks Stump Strategy
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