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President Obama speaking yesterday near the Tappan Zee Bridge. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/governorandrewcuomo/14001056327/">Office of the Governor of NY</a>
President Obama speaking yesterday near the Tappan Zee Bridge. Photo: Office of the Governor of NY

Astorino claims Cuomo aide made him sit in the back during president's speech

The Republican candidate for governor, Rob Astorino, claims an aide to Governor Cuomo made him sit in the back during President Obama's visit to the Tappan Zee Bridge Wednesday, a charge Cuomo's spokesman denies.

President Obama spoke near the bridge in Westchester County on the opening day of the state Republican Party convention, held just a few miles away nearby.

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Reported by

Karen DeWitt
NYS Capitol Correspondent

The Westchester County Executive, Rob Astorino, who is also the GOP nominee for governor, attended the event, along with his opponent, incumbent Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Astorino says he was initially told by the White House that he could sit in the front row, but when aides went to find his seat, they were told the places were all reserved for others, including Governor Cuomo.

“They had reserved seats, apparently for me in the front row. The next thing I know, I couldn’t get that ticket off stub hub, I was in the back,” Astorino said with a laugh.

The republican gubernatorial nominee admits he doesn’t know exactly what happened.  

“All I’ve been told is that the governor’s staff refused to allow us up front,” Astorino said.

A spokesman for Cuomo denies it ever happened, and says they had nothing to do with the seating.

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