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Astorino expects GOP, Conservatives to unify against Cuomo

Republican Rob Astorino on Monday told the state Conservative Party’s Political Action Committee that if he received the party’s endorsement for governor he would “absolutely” run on that line through the November elections.

The Westchester County executive is considering a run against Democratic Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and he said he expects the Republican and Conservative parties to unite on one candidate.

“I think if he chooses, he has an outstanding shot at being the candidate of the Conservative Party,” said party chairman Mike Long in an interview. Long said that in Astorino’s first run for county executive four years ago, the county Conservative Party endorsed his opponent. That prompted Long to personally endorse Astorino.

“I’d never done that before,” Long said in an interview, “so we have history.”

On Sunday at the two-day Conservative Party meeting, Republican Carl Paladino of Buffalo continued to promote the potential candidacy of billionaire developer Donald Trump. Paladino, who lost to Cuomo four years ago, is also considering a run.

Paladino wants Astorino to promise to to help oust legislative leaders, including Senate co-leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre), who Paladino considers too moderate and part of Albany’s dysfunction.

Astorino said the legislative leadership isn’t his issue.

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