Trailing Gov. Andrew Cuomo by nearly 25 points and unable to get New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, head of the Republican Governors Association, to help him take on Cuomo, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino nukes Gov. Cuomo with a remake of LBJ’s infamous “Daisy” ad:
The ad’s message, as stated by a narrator is, “These are the stakes. Do we reelect a governor who may end up in jail?” The ad means to refer to Cuomo’s treatment of his Moreland Commission to Combat Public Corruption, which Cuomo shut down in March. As Jaime Fuller puts it, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York is looking into the circumstances of Cuomo’s shut down of the Moreland Commission’s — for possible obstruction of justice or witness tampering.
Astorino defended the obtuse and over the top ad during an interview on WCNY’s “Capital Pressroom”:
“The governor, who is under investigation, does not want to discuss the investigation or his role” in the Moreland panel’s demise.
[. . .]
It’s a provocative ad; it was a provocative ad 50 years when President Johnson and the Democrats used it. … Andrew Cuomo’s face comes out of the cloud because we have a cloud of corruption hanging over our state.”
But why won’t Christie help Astorino? Is it, as Astorino suggests, that Christie is aiding Democrat Cuomo’s reelection? An allegation which reminds some of all the heat Christie took from Republicans over his embrace President Barack Obama after the devastating Hurricane Sandy — just days before the 2012 Presidential election. Or does it have something to do with the fact that the two governors, Christie and Cuomo, are jointly responsible for appointing the Board of Board of Commissioners that run the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. As we all know the Port Authority owns and operates the George Washington Bridge, recently of Bridgegate fame.
Christie’s defense that Astorino’s campaign is a lost cause doesn’t hold water. As Gov. George Pataki points out, no one thought he could beat Mario Cuomo.