Local Republicans optimistic about Astorino’s bid for governor

March 7, 2014

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino hopes to be the Republican nominee for governor and early polls show he’s in for an uphill battle. But local leaders in the Republican Party are optimistic about Astorino’s candidacy.

A recent Siena College poll shows 54 percent of New Yorkers are ready to re-elect Governor Cuomo. And Cuomo already has $33 million in his campaign war chest in a state that is 2 to 1 Democrat.

But Astorino is drawing some support already from Southern Tier Republicans. Mike Krusen is the Deputy County Executive in Chemung County.

Krusen acknowledges it won’t be an easy win for Astorino. But he says his experience in Westchester could give him an advantage.

“Astorino has won twice in Westchester County with a similar margin of Democrats to Republicans and has won handedly.”

Speaking at a fundraiser in Binghamton last week, Astorino said he won in his home county by reaching out to Democrats and minorities.

“That is how we will win as a party everywhere in New York. If we have a big tent, then let’s open it up and let’s let people in.”

Krusen says the hard work will be convincing people who support Governor Cuomo to switch sides.  

“He’s going to have to be in a position to get them thinking differently, that perhaps the lipstick on the pig doesn’t make it a shining star.”