Adams Supports Hochul Despite Disagreement Over Bail Reform

By Reuvain Borchardt

New York City Mayor Eric Adams (2nd R) speaking at a pre-High Holiday roundtable discussion with Orthodox Jewish reporters at City Hall, Monday. (Reuvain Borchardt/Hamodia)

NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Eric Adams reiterated his support of fellow Democrat Kathy Hochul in November’s gubernatorial election, despite their disagreements over the state’s bail-reform laws.

Hochul “has been extremely helpful in the area of crime,” Adams said, responding to a question from a Hamodia reporter as to whether a voter concerned specifically about crime should cast their ballot for the incumbent Hochul, or her Republican challenger, Rep. Lee Zeldin.

For more than two years, crime has soared in New York City and other parts of the state, which Republicans and moderate Democrats have blamed on bail-reform laws passed by the Democratic Legislature in 2019 and signed into law by former Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Adams, a former police captain, won his 2021 mayoral campaign on a law-and-order platform. Yet crime has continued to rise under his tenure, with overall index crime up 34% this year, and six of the seven index categories (other than murder) all rising by double digits.

At Adams’ urging, Hochul held up passage of the state budget last spring as she insisted, successfully, on including a partial rollback of bail reform. But Hochul has rebuffed Adams’ call that she convene a special session of the Legislature to further roll back the bail reform. Zeldin has publicly supported Adams’ call for a special session.

Yet despite Adams and Hochul disagreeing over the special session, they appear to have  gotten along well, making friendly joint appearances, and with Hochul tweeting birthday wishes to the mayor earlier this month, calling Adams “my friend.”

And Adams has resisted Zeldin’s attempts to align himself with the mayor on crime. When Zeldin tweeted in July that he, unlike, Hochul, supported Adams’ calls for a special session, Adams replied, “Congressman, you can’t claim to want to keep New Yorkers safe while opposing common sense gun safety laws, as you have throughout your entire career,” a reference to Zeldin’s opposition to gun control.

Adams restated his support of Hochul on Monday, when a Hamodia reporter asked the mayor whether a voter whose main concern is crime should vote for Hochul or Zeldin.

“I’m a strong Hochul person,” the mayor replied, at a pre-High Holiday briefing for Orthodox media at City Hall. “If it wasn’t for Governor Hochul, much of the changes we were able to get in Albany would not have happened. I called her during the session and told her I need her help. She went back and really compelled lawmakers to look at the crime-reform laws, and she was able to make real inroads. We need so much more to do. But Governor Hochul has been a partner. She has been extremely helpful in the area of crime.”

“I am a governor Hochul person,” Adams continued. “That’s where my vote is going. I encourage others to vote Governor Hochul.”

Adams – who, decades ago,  was a registered Republican for several years due to his law-and-order stance —  has repeatedly rejected being tied to Zeldin in any way.

“In spite of what people are attempting to say, [that] Lee Zeldin and I are aligned at the hip, we must have a broken hip because he clearly doesn’t get it,” Adams said at a press conference August 3. “He has voted against all of the responsible gun laws in Congress.”

Five days earlier, the mayor appeared to acknowledge that his support for Hochul may have been despite, rather than because of, their respective views on crime, when he said, “If anyone believes they’re going to agree 100% of the time on everything, then that’s not realistic … So the reality is I overwhelmingly support and agree with Governor Hochul, and I think she has been a great partner.”

All polls have shown Hochul leading the race. Election prognosticators at the 538 website give Hochul a 99% chance of winning the Nov. 8 election.

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