Rep. Stefanik Predicts Lee Zeldin Wins New York Governor’s Race

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House Republican conference chair Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) is predicting the coming red wave will hit New York State — telling Breitbart News she believes Lee Zeldin will win the governorship, and that House Republicans can pick up a majority in New York alone.

Speaking to Breitbart News on Thursday evening before a Capital Region Lee Zeldin rally, which saw thousands of attendants, Stefanik called the upcoming election a “once in a generation opportunity to win back the state of New York,” as momentum builds behind Republican candidates in a typically deep blue state.

“This is a once in a generation opportunity to win back the state of New York and really save our state,” Stefanik told Breitbart. “Lee is going to win this race, to have thousands of people turn out [to a rally] — we have not seen this in upstate New York before — this shows that the momentum is on our side.”

Stefanik also highlighted how badly Democrats are underperforming, in the state they can typically rely on. Multiple polls now show Lee Zeldin either within striking distance or ahead of incumbent New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D), a rare trend for the state that has been under Democrat party rule for almost two decades.

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY) at the Capitol in Washington, DC, May 14, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Gov. Hochul threw a rally Thursday with Vice President Kamala Harris and twice-failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, which Stefanik quipped was “a sign of a losing campaign.”

“When you look at the early vote, [Democrats are] underperforming across the board. There is no energy or enthusiasm — Kathy Hochul struggles to get a hundred people at her events, and here, Lee Zeldin is having thousands,” the congresswoman said. “That’s a sign of a losing campaign, when you bring out Hillary Clinton or Kamala.”

The Associated Press

Vice President Kamala Harris, left, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, center, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, stand together on stage during a campaign event for Hochul, Thursday, November 3, 2022, at Barnard College in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Stefanik pointed to the crime crisis currently roiling the state as the key issue that Republicans are winning on, saying the political atmosphere is “historic.”

“I think this is really historic because of the political atmosphere; you have single-party Democrat rule in both Washington and Albany. But particularly in New York State, Democrats have a supermajority in Albany, so that means that their radical ideas have been implemented,” Stefanik told Breitbart. “So failed bail reform is top of the concerns when it comes to causing the crime crisis.”

“The crime crisis is not only impacting New York City and downstate, it’s impacting upstate cities and upstate counties, including in my district, including the Capital Region, which is where we are right now. You cannot open a local paper here without seeing the increase in just horrific crimes,” Stefanik continued.

Stefanik predicted that House Republicans could pick up the five seats they need to get a majority just in New York, saying seats that were previously thought to be unwinnable for Republicans are now up for grabs.

“New York is going to have a lot of historic victories. We need to pick up five seats in the House to win the majority — we can pick them up in New York alone. We have three seats in the Hudson Valley that are ripe for pickup with great candidates … seats on Long Island with great candidates … And then we have two seats that previously had not been on anyone’s radar … in the Capital District, Liz Joy, NRCC just announced they are making investments there, and then the Rochester seat,” Stefanik told Breitbart. “Those seats were never on the prognosticators’ map, and now they’re in play.”

Stefanik emphasized that the last push for Republicans needs to be making sure that Republican voters know victory in the state is within reach, saying “every vote is going to matter.”

“In the closing days of the campaign, this is when it’s really important that voters know every vote is going to matter. This is not an election to sit on the sidelines. No election is, but this one, we need folks to turn out,” Stefanik said. “I’m excited, in my district we’ve been able to deliver the highest turnout in any congressional district in New York State for the past few cycles, we need to do that again, to make sure that we have big margins upstate.”

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