Hurricane Rudy is about to hit New York.
Andrew Giuliani is unleashing his most potent weapon in his race for governor — his dad
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani will be stumping around the state wherever he is needed and vigorously make the case that GOP primary voters should support his son over Long Island Rep. Lee Zeldin.
“I don’t think Lee is the right person at this time to be governor. I think he’s too weak,” the elder Giuliani said while leaving a New York Young Republicans event in midtown Tuesday. The former mayor was still frothing at ballot challenges the Zeldin campaign had launched against Andrew Giuliani.
“Lee is willing to lie and be a stupid liar,” Rudy Giuliani snapped, adding that he couldn’t wait to spread the message to a wider audience in the coming weeks.
“I love upstate. I know upstate. I’ve spent a lot of time up there. I’d love to go upstate,” he added.
Giuliani, 77, certainly appears to have time to help out Andrew, 36. On Wednesday he raised eyebrows after showing up as a contestant on The Mask Singer with a performance of “Bad to the Bone.”
The campaign is rolling out Rudy Giuliani on Sunday for a rally in Binghamton, New York. Plans are also in the works for a possible appearance at a Saratoga County GOP reception on April 29. High dollar fundraisers are scheduled with friends in New York and in Palm Beach at the home of Beth Ailes, the widow of former Fox News boss Roger Ailes.
The state’s establishment Republicans have mostly lined up behind Zeldin, but his support has showed signs of weakness.
Powerful upstate voices like Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Schuylerville) and Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-New Hartford) have so far declined to endorse him. And while Team Zeldin has touted polls showing them with a healthy lead, Giulaini’s camp has pointed to other surveys — most notably from pollster John Zogby — which shows the race as much closer and more than 3/10 voters undecided.
“In terms of going after Lee it’s no holds barred,” Andrew Giuliani told The Post. “[Rudy] is going to continue to ramp up his public appearances and continue to travel around the state.”
The former mayor earned bipartisan plaudits for cleaning up crime and steering the Big Apple through the tumultuous days after the 9/11 terrorist attack. In his later career, however, he came a partisan lightening rod for his work as an attorney and confidante to former President Trump.
Rudy Giuliani remains personally close with Trump and has kept in his fickle good graces, insiders say. He has steadfastly continued to promote the false claim that President Biden won the 2020 election through fraud. Trump originally leaned toward Zeldin, but lobbying from the former mayor has kept the ex-president neutral in the race — so far.
His ties to Trump may have dimmed his appeal to city residents, but Rudy Giuliani’s star has never burned brighter in the state’s vast red north.
“Upstate New York is Trump country and therefore is Rudy country,” said one influential upstate GOP strategist, saying no Zeldin surrogate came even close to matching the former mayor’s juice with voters.
“To meet Rudy will drive attendance to Andrew’s events, Rudy will be the anchor to draw media headlines and buzz,” the insider added, noting that even perceived liabilities might be positives.
“Upstate people like the January 6 stuff. People like that [Rudy] was loyal to Trump,” the insider said.
The primary vote will take place on June 28, 2022.