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Racy Paladino E-mails Topic of Discourse in New York AG race

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October 6, 2010

NEW YORK, New York: WNYMedia published in April 2010 email messages supposedly forwarded by Carl Paladino, the Tea Party-backed gubernatorial candidate, to his friends that contained what some internet news outlets, specifically The Huffington Post, have labeled as racist and sexist material.[1] The graphic material of these emails "contain images of Africa tribesmen dancing entitled "Obama Inaugaration Rehearsal" and an email showing chimpanzees doing an Irish dance entitled "proof the Irish discovered Africa" and another email depicting bestiality."[2] Michael Caputo, Paladino's campaign manager, has challenged the authenticity of these messages, arguing that the site that broke the story has been accused of faking emails before; Paladino himself later admitted that some of the emails were indeed authentic, but denied that he originated any of them.[3] The Buffalo Bean, an political news blog, noted the apparent hypocrisy of WNYMedia, "who defended Sam Hoyt when his intern affair scandal broke and bashed Joe Illuzzi for leaking damaging emails."[4]

Several months later, State Senator Eric Schneiderman, the Democratic nominee in the race for State Attorney General, has attacked Donovan for failing to condemn both the emails and Paladino himself. The Staten Island District Attorney claims that he had not seen the emails and therefore could not comment on something he had not viewed. As far as the Republican gubernatorial candidate himself, he "cited the ethical code of the District Attorneys Association of the State of New York in declining to endorse Carl Paladino, his party’s standard bearer for governor."[5] Donovan accused Schneiderman of "pathetic and frankly vile charges of racism" to smear him in what has become a surprisingly tight race.[6]

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