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Supporters gather to watch debate | Politics

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Supporters gather to watch debate
Politics

In a region that follows politics closely, the gubernatorial debate was must-see TV.  Supporters of Republican Carl Paladino and Democrat Andrew Cuomo gathered for some debate-watching parties.

People seemed to agree that the debate was entertaining, even humorous at times.  But they also say the issues facing New York State are no laughing matter.

Rudy's Red House Pub on Broadway in Rensselaer, across from the train station, was the spot for a debate-watching party organized by Rensselaer County Captain for Team Paladino, Carl Gottstein, Jr. People gathered there for pizza and politics.

"Any debate that gives me specifics instead of soundbites is going to grab my attention," said Nathan Lebron, a former Republican candidate for Albany Mayor.

This gathering drew Republican candidates, including Ted Danz, who is running for Congress against incumbent Paul Tonko.

Paladino supporters say the Buffalo businessman offers the dramatic change New York needs.

"I'm very proud of him.  We are bringing the issues forward we feel we need to bring forward.  And we're getting attention that usually a Republican doesn't get in the media.  He's doing what he has to do," said Gottstein.

"I think he needs to make a case about business and taxes.  Business and taxes.  Especially coming from Western New York where nine of the 10 most-taxed counties happen to reside," said Lebron.

People also followed the debate closely at the Albany County Democratic Committee headquarters on Colvin Avenue in Albany. Democratic Rep. Paul Tonko made a stop at this debate-watching party.

Cuomo supporters say the state attorney general is the man to lead the state. 

Committee Chairman Dan McCoy says they organized this party to energize the Democratic base and show people that change is needed.

"And Andrew is talking the change that we need for the state.  The 62 counties in the state of New York are hurting.  And Andrew has a message and if you are watching the debate for the last hour and half, it shows the lack of seriousness from the other candidates.  We have a nine billion dollar deficit," said McCoy.

"I think he's doing really, really well.  He's very focused, on message and very confident," said . Evelyn Awad of Loudonville.

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