PLATTSBURGH - One Republican candidate in the race to become New York State's next governor has garnered the support of two area legislators while another is making his first tour through the North Country.
Assemblywomen Janet Duprey (R-Peru) and Teresa Sayward (R-Willsboro) have given their endorsement to Rick Lazio, the Long Island Republican and former Congressman who announced his bid for governor in September.
The announcement of their endorsements comes just weeks after the Essex County Republican Committee announced its endorsement of Lazio, who now faces a challenge from Suffolk County executive Steve Levy and Erie County developer Carl Paladino.
"Rick is a life-long Republican with strong fiscally conservative values that people are looking for in government today," said Sayward. "He
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has a message that is believable and will resonate with all voters."
In addition to Essex County, Lazio has also gained the endorsement of Republicans in St. Lawrence and Herkimer Counties. Conservative party chairs in Warren, Washington and Franklin Counties are among many who have endorsed Lazio, as has the state Conservative Party. Levy, a long-time Democrat in the State Assembly, received the backing of State Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox March 19 and switched parties shortly thereafter. He has since sought to gain enough support from GOP delegates to run in a Republican primary.
Franklin County Republican Chairman Jim Ellis, a Levy supporter, organized his recent three-day trip through the North Country where Levy met with business leaders and spoke at a rally of the Upstate New York TEA Party in Plattsburgh April 15.
There, Levy laid out his plan as governor, which includes instituting a spending cap at the state level, a property tax cap for local governments, and a plan to waive capital gains taxes as an incentive for businesses locating in upstate New York.
"The pundits know that people are fed up, they're scared, they're angry, and there's one thing they care about this election: who has the skill set and who has the plan to save this state from bankruptcy," said Levy.