As a Conservative and Republican Candidate for Mayor, Joe Lhota doesn’t know whether he wants to be fish or fowl — When it comes to Tea Party Republicans, mostly the Republican-Conservative mayoral nominee comes off as something foully fishy indeed
In one radio interview Lhota attacked Tea Party Republicans in Congress, backed one of their key demands on Obamacare, which had been raised in the debate of the Continuing Resolution to fund government agencies — and then based on that very same radio interview, was attacked by Bill deBlasio for being a Tea Party Republican
According to a report on the Politicker blog, Republican-Conservative Joe Lhota “...condemns his party’s federal representatives for the partial government shutdown currently gripping Washington...” and at almost the same time, “...endorsed one of their top demands: delaying the individual health care mandate....” ( See “Joe Lhota Backs Obamacare Delay” by Colin Campbell, 10/7/13, NY Observer/ Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/10/joe-lhota-backs-obamacare-delay/]).
In that article in Politicker, Lhota was quoted as saying specifically, “The shutdown is a disgrace.... It should never have happened. People who go to Washington are elected to govern. What they’re doing is a complete and total absence of governance. They don’t realize how damaging it is going to be to them personally as well as to the party. People need to come to the table and they need to negotiate. This country is about compromise.... I cannot tell you how upsetting it is for me to see 30 extremists in Washington control the entire government. There’s something very, very wrong doing on.”
On another radio program this morning, Mr. Lhota’s opponent Bill de Blasio criticized Lhota for not doing enough to disavow his party’s hardliners. “This is not the first time the Republican party has forced a government shutdown,” said the Democrat nominee for mayor on the ABC 880 AM radio program “The Answer with Curtis Sliwa.” According to deBlasio “[The Republican Party] doesn’t represent values I think most New Yorkers hold. And I think if someone’s a member of that party, they shouldn’t just idly [sit] by and let it move farther and farther to the right.” Then he specifically addressed Lhota’s position on Obamacare “This is unbelievable to me that a guy who says he wants to represent New York City would be taking the Tea Party position on the question of the Affordable Care Act” (See “Bill de Blasio Says Joe Lhota Taking ‘Tea Party View of the World’ ” by Jill Colvin, 10/7/13, NY Observer/ Politicker [http://politicker.com/2013/10/bill-de-blasio-says-joe-lhota-taking-tea-party-view-of-the-world/]).
Later on Monday, the deBlasio Campaign released a statement slamming the Republican nominee Lhota over his position on the individual mandate, as follows: “Joe Lhota says he is a different kind of Republican, but when push comes to shove he sides with the GOP fringe. His endorsement of delaying Obamacare puts him in lockstep with Republican extremists like Ted Cruz — extremists who would rather shut down the government and furlough thousands of New York City workers than see hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers get access to health care. Joe Lhota’s positions might help him with the Tea Party, but they are wrong for New York.”
What is becoming obvious is that Joe Lhota is completely confused as to how to handle his relationship with a conservatively-leaning national and state Republican Party. This has led to an absolutely muddled Lhota message on something as unpopular as Obamacare. As can be seen above this has left Candidate Lhota open to left-wing attacks by his opponent for his alignment with Tea Party Republicans, after Lhota’s having made remarks that are also clearly offensive to his potential Tea Party supporters.
It all comes off looking very fishy.