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Times Union: Statewide candidate visits Schenectady bakery

Posted on August 8, 2014

Original article by Benjamin Oreskes on timesunion.com

As two kids fought over one of Villa Italia’s cookies, three mayors of Schenectady sat with Democratic lieutenant governor candidate Kathy Hochul.

Over tea, pastries and the Italian nougat candy called Torrone, former mayors Brian Stratton and Karen Johnson joined Mayor Gary McCarthy to discuss with Hochul the business challenges facing entrepreneurs, local casino bids, and how to sustain economic growth in upstate New York.

The public officials then toured the bakery’s kitchen with owner Bobby Mallozzi, who explained to Hochul how his father started the business in 1965.

Wearing an incredulous expression, the former congresswoman looked at the pastries then at the employees. “How do you guys stay so slim?” she asked.

Hochul has crisscrossed the state in recent weeks — a turnaround from early summer, when it seemed Gov. Andrew Cuomo‘s campaign was trying to keep her under wraps or confine to her Western New York home turf.

As she met with Electric City leaders Friday afternoon, Cuomo’s campaign announced that the Friends of Kathy Hochul campaign committee raised about $530,000 since July 15. Cuomo’s campaign raised $601,315 in the same period.

Hochul, endorsed by House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi Thursday, was asked about the charged leveled by her Democratic primary rival Tim Wu that her previous policies on immigration and gun control were more in line with those of Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

“Sometimes politics is so darn silly — I don’t even pay attention to that,” she said.

Hochul expressed no concern that the Sept. 9 primary could attract more liberal voters who are seen as Wu’s potential base. Hochul said that a debate between the two is under consideration, but threw cold water on the prospect: “There’s a very short time frame now.”

Wu’s running mate Zephyr Teachout spent Friday in a Brooklyn courtroom defending her candidacy from a residency challenge brought by Cuomo’s lawyers.

“My simple statement is everyone has to play by the rules,” Hochul said. “There’s a reason why we have residency requirements.”

In the kitchen, Mallozzi walked Hochul through the steps of cake production. She then picked up a mold used to make football-themed cakes and asked what it was.

Upon learning its use, she turned to the other officials and joked on a pressing issue in Western New York, “As long (a potential buyer) promises to keep the Bills in Buffalo, we’re going to send them a cake.”

Original article by Benjamin Oreskes on timesunion.com

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