Pumped-up Steve Levy Fires Downtown Volleys

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Steve Levy, newly hatched Republican candidate for governor, was working the Wall Street precincts today in search of campaign cash and took the opportunity to blast away at almost everyone else.

Using a conference room at a friendly downtown law firm (Lewis Johs Avallone Aviles), the Suffolk County executive met with a smattering of reporters to repeat his call for creating a new budget deadline.

Rapping the polished wooden table before him, Levy spoke in a high-velocity flood about his budget pitch which would make April 1 the absolute, final, deadline. After that, the governor's executive budget takes effect. "Simple, right?" said Levy. "Why don't they do it in New York? Because in Albany common sense is a foreign term."

That was for openers. Then he was off to the races.

  • On Albany: "Dysfunction in Albany is known far and wide throughout this nation, and it's for good reason."

  • On unions: "Public employee unions control the halls of Albany."

  • On defined-benefit pensions for state workers: "Only in New York is this stuff allowed to happen. And that's why we're going bankrupt."

  • On losing union support: "I know darn well I'm ticking off a lot of groups out there. There are public employee union leaders who will never support me. Well, they're not going to support me anyway. They're supporting the other guy."

  • On GOP challenger/businessman/millionaire Carl Paladino: "He's going to fizzle out real quick..he's just having fun."

  • GOP/conservative challenger Rick Lazio: "He's in the race a year and his numbers against Cuomo haven't moved; I'm in the race a week and a half and I'm at the same level."

  • On his chances: "Before I got in this race it was seen as a coronation. Well it's not anymore!"


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