ABC News's Michelle Dubert reports:
Perhaps the New York Post editorial board didn’t take too kindly to New York gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino’s (R) loaded threat to “take out” the paper’s veteran scribe Fred Dicker.
In a surprising move today, the right-leaning Post, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch’s NewsCorporation, endorsed Democrat Andrew Cuomo, the state’s attorney general, saying there was “something refreshing” about Paladino at the outset of his campaign, until “a screw popped loose.”
“He won the primary by showing that he understood the frustrations New Yorkers grapple with daily — and by speaking to them, directly and forcefully…Then a screw popped loose. Paladino revealed himself to be undisciplined, unfocused and untrustworthy — that is, fundamentally unqualified for the office he seeks,” the editorial reads, adding that he gave Cuomo “a free pass” by growing silent on the issues.
Paladino’s brusque style, controversial remarks and desire to “take a baseball bat” to Albany has kept him in the headlines despite trailing Cuomo badly in the polls. A new New York Times poll released last night has Cuomo leading Paladino 59 percent to 24 percent among likely voters.
Paladino’s fame – or notoriety – came quickly with his unlikely primary victory over former Rep. Rick Lazio (R) on September 14. But since then, he and his campaign have received more attention for his gaffes and dismissiveness with the media than for his plan to fix New York’s struggling economy.
The much-publicized scuffle with Dicker came after the reporter approached Paladino asking for evidence to support his accusations that Cuomo had had extra-marital affairs. Paladino instead asked why the paper “sent goons after my daughter,” referencing the Post running stories on Paladino’s mistress and their 10-year-old daughter, culminating in the threat, “You send another goon to my daughter’s house, I’ll take you out, buddy.” Paladino’s campaign manager ended the confrontation by intervening, telling Dicker he was working for Cuomo, was “way out of line” and is “a terrible journalist.”