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Tags: zeldin | bragg | hochul | new york governor | criminal

Zeldin Makes Firing of Manhattan DA Big Issue In Bid For NY Governor

Lee Zeldin
Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y. (Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 30 August 2022 04:23 PM EDT

The news that, if elected governor of New York this fall, Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin will fire controversial Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is not new.

But his restating it on Monday — in no uncertain terms — is a strong sign, Empire State political observers told Newsmax, that Zeldin will make this a major issue in his campaign against Democrat Gov. Kathy Hochul.

"I'll fire him on Day 1 as N.Y.'s next Governor," Zeldin tweeted, underscoring a promise he first made on Aug. 7, "Bragg sides with criminals over law-abiding NYers."

He also called on readers of his Twitter feed to "SIGN below if you agree that Bragg must go."

Since taking office as Manhattan's top law enforcement official in January, Bragg has ended his office's prosecution of low-level offenses such as fare evasion, resisting arrest, prostitution, and anything to do with cannabis.

Bragg also ordered his assistant prosecutors to pursue lesser charges for burglaries and store robberies in which the offender "displays a dangerous instrument but does not create a genuine risk of physical harm."

As a result of these policies, Bragg's identification with lenient enforcement policy has made him the most disliked target of law enforcement officials since the late New York Criminal Court Judge Bruce Wright — so identified with imposing minimal bail or none at all for poor or minority suspects that the police unions dubbed him "Turn 'Em Loose Bruce."

"Zeldin's pledge to remove Alvin Bragg, the criminal-friendly, [George] Soros-backed, Manhattan DA in a city wracked by violent crime, is a definite political plus," former New York Post columnist Frederic U. Dicker, who covered state politics under six governors, told Newsmax.

Dicker recalled how Republican Gov. George Pataki removed Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson from the case of an accused cop-killer in 1996 after the prosecutor did not seek the death penalty.

"And Pataki's popularity went up," he said.

The governor may remove any elective sheriff, county clerk, district attorney or registrar within the term for which he or she shall have been elected; but before so doing the governor shall give to such officer a copy of the charges against him or her and an opportunity of being heard in his or her defense.

The constitutional power to remove officials altogether on various charges has been used by past governors. In 1900, Manhattan District Attorney Asa Bird Gardiner was removed by then-Gov. Theodore Roosevelt on corruption. Gov. Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 removed New York County (Manhattan) Sheriff Thomas Farley after the sheriff was unable to explain how he had a fortune of $357,000 in "a mysterious tin box" which far exceeded his salary.

The conservative grass roots in New York appear to be excited by Zeldin's promise to fire Bragg.

"Bragg's abuse of power became evident on Day One when he ordered his assistant district attorneys to ignore state law [in prosecuting crimes]," said New York Conservative Party Chairman Gerard Kasar, whose party has given its ballot line to Zeldin. "That misuse of his office has allowed dangerous felons to be released. He needs to be removed."

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Politics
The news that, if elected governor of New York this fall, Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin will fire controversial Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg is not new. But his restating it on Monday - in no uncertain terms - is a strong sign he aims to do it.
zeldin, bragg, hochul, new york governor, criminal
533
2022-23-30
Tuesday, 30 August 2022 04:23 PM
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