Speculation has begun to swirl about the possibility of Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) mounting a bid for governor of New York as Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is embroiled in a scandal over his handling of data regarding the state’s coronavirus nursing home deaths.
Fox News reports:
“In the last 48 hours a significant number of large donors and influential Republicans have reached out to Lee Zeldin to ask him to take on Cuomo,” a Republican consultant with ties to the congressman told Fox News on Friday.
Zeldin – a four-term congressman who represents the eastern half of New York’s Long Island – has carefully listened to these people who have called him, according to the strategist, who asked to remain anonymous to speak more freely.
Sources familiar with the matter confirmed to Breitbart News that Zeldin has been approached about a possible run and that he is considering it.
The Cuomo administration is reportedly under investigation by the FBI and U.S. Attorney in Brooklyn after the governor’s top aide privately apologized to Democrat lawmakers for withholding the nursing home data, conceding that officials “froze” because of concerns the figures could “be used against” them in a federal inquiry. The stunning admission was first reported by the New York Post.
Zeldin has expressed support for the investigation into the Cuomo administration, saying the government owes it to thousands of New York families who lost loved ones in nursing homes that “justice” is delivered.
Zeldin established himself as a political star thanks to his vigorous defense of former President Donald Trump during Trump’s first impeachment trial.
Kimberly Guilfoyle, who served as a senior adviser to Trump’s 2020 campaign, praised Zeldin’s performance during the House’s impeachment proceedings.
“Lee Zeldin is one of Congress’s most effective communicators when it comes to commanding the attention of the media and clearly articulating his position,” Guilfoyle told Breitbart News. “Lee routinely stops fake news narratives in their tracks, while in the same breath delivering a bulletproof defense of President Trump and his America First agenda. He’s the kind of leader we’re lucky to have in our corner.”
Former Trump White House senior adviser Tony Sayegh has also praised Zeldin, predicting the New York Republican has a bright future ahead of him.
“For those of us who have known Lee from the earliest days of his political career, his rise to stardom comes as no surprise,” Sayegh said in a statement to Breitbart News. “He is tenacious, hard-working, smart, sincere, and truly dedicated to public service for all the right reasons. He is the exact model of the patriots our framers hoped would enter government.”
Despite building buzz around the possible gubernatorial bid, Zeldin has not commented on the matter.