Carl Paladino is undoubtedly a very shrewd man. He has made many millions right in his hometown of Buffalo, hardly the intuitive choice for profitable real estate investment. His goal these days is to get elected governor of New York.
Wednesday evening while getting the Conservative Party’s nod, Paladino had a shouting match with reporter Fred Dicker of the NY Post. Video of the confrontation was seen everywhere Thursday. Dicker asked Paladino to show proof his opponet Andrew Cuomo had cheated when he was married to Kerry Kennedy. Paladino fired back that Dicker’s paper, the NY Post, was out of line sending a photographer to the home of his 10 year-old daughter by a former mistress. Purveyors of conventional wisdom opined that Paladino thus probably blew whatever chance he had to beat Andrew Cuomo.
Paladino saw it all much differently Thursday night at the Erie County Republican Committee’s annual neeting “A day of definition-yesterday” was his take. Earlier at the gathering in Buffalo’s Adams Mark Hotel he confidently predicted, “We’re going to win this thing.”
Paladino told reporters after the meeting that Dicker apparently listened in while Paladino was talking to a Politico reporter. Paladino said he was asking her why he was badgered about his personal life and nobody asked Cuomo whether he had been unfaithful. When Dicker began to question him about proof Cuomo had cheated Paladino said he initially misunderstood what Dicker was asking for.
“I get questioned constantly by the press about my life-my personal life,” Paladino told WGRZ-TV. “They ask me questions about infidelity; they ask me about everything. And I said why doesn’t Andrew Cuomo get these questions? Why doesn’t he get a question about whether he’s had any infidelities. And that’s where the remark came from.”
He continued, “Dicker took it out of context and went and presented it as though I had made an accusation. I did not.” Fred Dicker is perhaps the most influential reporter of Albany doings, but anti-politician Paladino told WBEN radio, “The man will never get anything from me again.”
WBEN’s news department studied Dicker’s campaign reporting and found Cuomo routinely described with words like “popular”, “thoughtful” etc while Paladino was labeled “angry”, “blustering” and other perjoritive adjectives. The New York Times coverage of Paladino and his campaign makes no pretense of fairness. His ideas are “clownish”. His aides are “tainted” Columnist Bob Herbert characterized the GOP/Conservative as “racist”, “vile” and “filthy” because of raunchy e-mails Paladino had forwarded to friends in 2009.
Most politicians would grow pale at the non-stop media slams, but not Paladino. In spite of his outburst Wednesday he seems almost serene about NY’s downstate media. My guess is that Paladino figured out early that the entrenched Albany establishment includes the left-wing press.