What could make the NY State gubernatorial race better than having a matchup between frontrunner and Democratic establishment figure Andrew Cuomo versus intensely out-spoken Tea Party millionaire Carl Paladino? Why, having the rejected Republican candidate, Rick Lazio, stay on the Conservative Party line on the November ballot! A source tells the Daily News that Lazio feels there's "room for a moderate voice in a race when one candidate is a nut and the other is an Albany insider... It's such a bizarre year and such a bizarre time, and, let's face it, Carl Paladino is one sentence from dropping the N-word at any moment."
Lazio, a former Congressman who lost the 2000 Senate race to Hillary Clinton, also apparently wants to help out Conservative Party head Mike Long; the News explains that Long "needs a gubernatorial candidate to get at least 50,000 votes on Row D in November to keep his party alive for another four years." Lazio is expected to announced his decision at a dinner tonight.
A race with Lazio in the mix could bode well for Cuomo, who has even suggested that Lazio participate in any upcoming debates (which of course led to Paladino saying that if Lazio appears, so should other minor party candidates). Whatever happens, Long isn't going to back Paladino, "While he strikes a chord on lots of issues that we stand for and believe in, they think, quite frankly, he is really irresponsible in his demeanor, in his character. They don't want to have it written in history that he was their candidate."