Trump Dubbed 'Conservative Rockefeller' for New York Governor Bid

Image: Trump Dubbed 'Conservative Rockefeller' for New York Governor Bid

Thursday, 26 Dec 2013 05:17 PM

By Cathy Burke

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Donald Trump is reportedly getting encouragement to run against incumbent Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo from Republican state lawmakers and Conservative Party leaders.

"We believe we moved him from a soft no to a firm maybe," strategist Michael Caputo told New York Post columnist Andrea Peyser.

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In her column Tuesday, Peyser wrote state GOP chairman Ed Cox praised "The Apprentice" creator and billionaire real estate developer for his "smart political mind" after a Dec. 13 meeting.

And three days later, Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long told the Post, "Mr. Trump would give [current Gov.] Andrew Cuomo heartburn," she noted.

Peyser wrote Trump is due to meet with other local lawmakers in January — and he has already said he'll make a decision in January about whether to run.

But he's already sounding more than ready for the political fray.

"If I ran and won, this state would become so rich, our taxes would come down, people would come back, our health care would be taken care of at the highest level," he told Peyser. "Our infrastructure would be rebuilt."

He's also battling state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, alleging corruption, "setting the table neatly for a corruption-in-Albany campaign," the American Spectator wrote Thursday.

Trump, who flirted with, and then quickly ditched, a presidential run in 2012 — and has popped up on lists of 2016 GOP contenders — may be "the conservative version of Nelson Rockefeller," the magazine wrote.

Like the late four-term governor, Trump is a native New Yorker, "the real deal..." and "has frequently been connected to presidential aspirations," the American Spectator wrote.

"Though Nelson Rockefeller eventually became synonymous with liberal Republicanism — a personal political choice that destroyed his presidential nomination chances — Rockefeller also left behind a decidedly philosophically neutral blueprint for just how Trump could win the New York governorship," the magazine noted, citing his 1958 win over incumbent Averell Harriman.

And though Trump is "disdainful of those perceived by conservatives as Rockefeller’s political heirs," the magazine asserted Trump could win the New York governorship should he decide to make a run.

"Yes, he could," the magazine wrote. "By all accounts, 2014 is slated to be a GOP year. The Obama administration is plummeting by the day. Andrew Cuomo has not shown himself to be an overpoweringly popular governor."

In Peyser's column, she wrote the Democratic governor has largely brushed off a possible Trump challenge.

“Oh, I don’t know, we have plenty of time for politics," Cuomo said. "I’m thinking more about the State of the State and the budget.’’

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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