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Westchester County Executive Debate Gets Chippy

Incumbent Rob Astorino, New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson Trade Barbs
Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino (file / credit: Westchester County)

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino (file/credit: Westchester County)

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WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Westchester County executive candidates Rob Astorino and Noam Bramson got confrontational in their debate Wednesday night.

As WCBS 880’s John Metaxas reported, the debate was so heated the candidates spent more time attacking each other than answering questions. Still, policy differences did emerge.
Astorino, the Republican incumbent, stuck up for the tough stand he has takenĀ in the county’s settlement with the federal government to build affordable housing,

“It’s called defending our communities from an overreaching, aggressive federal government that is trying to dictate new terms in the housing settlement,” Astorino said.

Bramson, a Democrat, said Astorino’s unwillingness to cooperate with the federal government cost Westchester millions of dollars in grants.

“Equating Rob’s positions and his philosophy with what we see in Washington and the tea party is right on target,” Bramson said.

“The truth and the fact of the matter is Rob is the most right-winged, conservative county executive this county has seen in its modern history,” he added. “And so the choice between us could not be more clear.”

Astorino tried to tout his fiscal responsibility during his four years county executive.

“We’ve made sure that we live within our means by making tough choices, so we have reduced the property tax levy,” he said. “That’s what I’m responsible for, the county budget.”

Bramson noted that the Board of Legislators overrode Astorino’s veto of the latest county budget.

WCBS 880 anchor Steve Scott moderated the debate.

Voters will head to the polls Nov. 5.

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