June 19, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
June 19, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Zeldin Wants to Be NY’s First Jewish Republican Governor

On October 28, Lee Zeldin, the candidate running to become New York’s third Jewish governor (and first Jewish Republican governor), recently hosted a virtual briefing for Jewish media groups. As Election Day nears, Zeldin discussed our communal campaign issues.

Zeldin first highlighted education. “Albany has, in many respects, declared war on yeshiva education,” he said. “In doing so, they’ve not told the story of everything good about a yeshiva education nor why parents want to send their kids to yeshivas,” such as communal values taught, high attendance rates, the schools’ continuing education and so many yeshiva graduates living law-abiding lives. “I use every opportunity to tell the rest of that story. As the Regents were voting on substantial equivalency, the current governor hadn’t taken a stance on this issue.

“The governor is certainly entitled to have an opinion that’s publicly stated and help move public opinion. No form of education has ever obtained perfection and any opportunity to improve any form of education should always be pursued.”

On rising antisemitism, Zeldin noted: “We continue to witness violent antisemitism. Dov Hikind‘s organization, Americans Against Antisemitism, reports that people aren’t getting incarcerated for committing antisemitic crimes. There must be a consequence that’s paid. It’s important that DAs prosecute the law, cashless bail is overhauled, and judges have discretion on dangerousness. Other pro-criminal laws need to be overhauled.”

Zeldin added: “There’s a push in Albany to pass more pro-criminal laws. It’s really important for us to restore balance to Albany, to block passage of these laws and overhaul pro-criminal laws that have been passed. I’d love to be able to work with the state legislature on this, but what’s been indicated, so far, is that the state legislature isn’t looking to come to the table. So we’re gonna have to force them to come.

“My first day in office in January,” Zeldin asserted, “we’ll declare a crime emergency in the State of New York. We will suspend New York’s cashless bail law, [the] Less Is More [Act], the HALT [Solitary Confinement] Act and discovery law changes. I’ve declared, on that first day, my first action will be notifying Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg that he’s going to be fired for refusing to enforce the law.” Zeldin reiterated that his top priority is to do everything in his power to “make the streets safer.”

Regarding the Jewish community, Zeldin said: “As a member of Congress, whether it’s fighting the BDS movement, co-chairing the Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish relations and speaking out against antisemitism, we ensure we are identifying, confronting and crushing antisemitism in every form.” Concerning the City University of New York, he has “heard from a number of Jewish professors who feel like they are unwelcome there. We have votes and debates being advanced inside the faculty-student administration, where Jewish professors feel like there is no home for them at CUNY. When families and graduates wanted to celebrate a very special moment at a commencement of CUNY’s School of Law, they couldn’t without sitting through a speech by someone. who in my opinion, is antisemitic.

“We have to ensure that we are cleaning up government, education and the streets to make sure Jewish people feel safe and welcome, religious freedom is protected and yeshiva education is supported and advanced.”

Emphasizing that he will do more to promote school choice, Zeldin said: “This is not about being anti-public school or anti-nonpublic school. It’s about being in favor of all forms of education to try to make all forms of education better. New York State standardized test scores reveal a remarkable growing disparity. I was looking at the results for fourth-grade reading and math for Black students, Hispanic students and low-income students, with a growing gap between the performance levels here in New York and the national average.” He pointed out how New York spends two-and-a-half times more per pupil than states like Florida and Mississippi, yet their students are doing better.

Zeldin was born and raised on Long Island. He grew up in Suffolk County and graduated from William Floyd High School in Mastic Beach. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Albany and his law degree from Albany Law School, becoming, at age 23, New York’s youngest attorney at the time.
After completing the Army ROTC program, Congressman Zeldin served four years on active duty. During that time, he served in different capacities, including as a military intelligence officer, prosecutor and military magistrate. In Summer 2006, while assigned to the Army’s elite 82nd Airborne Division, Zeldin deployed to Tikrit, Iraq with an infantry battalion of fellow paratroopers in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. In 2010, he was elected to the New York State Senate. Since 2014, this Jewish Republican has represented Long Island’s First Congressional District.

Election Day is Tuesday, November 8. Early voting ends Sunday November 6.

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles