Newly-minted GOP gubernatorial
candidate Carl Paladino will be in the city tomorrow to meet with two
veteran Queens Republicans with longstanding ties to the Conservative
confirmed the Buffalo businessman, who formally announced his candidacy
today, is scheduled to sit down with former Council Minority Leader Tom
Ognibene and former Sen. Serphin Maltese.
There has been some speculation
this evening that Paladino might try to recruit Ognibene, who ran on
the Conservative line against Mayor Bloomberg in 2005 after getting
booted off the GOP primary ballot, to be his LG running mate.
insisted that is not the
purpose of tomorrow's get-together.
"We're not thinking of
lieutenant governor at all at this point," Caputo said, although he did
allow that Paladino is "leaning toward" a female running mate and also
believes his LG should be someone from downstate.
Caputo didn't officially rule out
the idea of Ognibene as an LG contender, but he didn't rule it in,
Ognibene, who has failed in several
recent attempts to win back his Council seat, was mentioned as someone
with whom Paladino should speak if he is serious about trying to land
the Conservative Party line - which he is, Caputo said.
state Conservative Party's
executive committee as you'll recall, has endorsed Rick Lazio,
upsetting Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy and his biggest political
champion, state GOP Chairman Ed Cox).
Maltese helped found the state
Conservative Party, but switched his enrollment to the GOP in 1990 and
chaired the Queens Republican Party until he was forced to give up that
post following his near-loss to Democrat Al Baldeo in
the 2006 election.
was ousted two years later
by former Democratic Councilman (and now Sen.) Joe Addabbo.
Caputo said Paladino is scheduledഀ
to meet with Staten Island Republicans Wednesday morning. (He didn't
name any names, saying only "the usual suspects" would be on hand). He
also said Paladino would be in the city every 10 days or so from now on
as he ramps up his campaign.