Astorino: 'Cuomo is sending the state into a downward spiral'

By Jillian Marshall

Astorino: 'Cuomo is sending the state into a downward spiral'

July 16, 2014 Updated Jul 16, 2014 at 5:50 PM EST

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Republican candidate for Governor Rob Astorino is calling out incumbent Andrew Cuomo for a debate in the Southern Tier.

He challenged Cuomo to meet him in Binghamton for a head-to-head debate at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

Astorino said Cuomo's policies have made New York worse, specifically in upstate areas, like the Southern Tier.

"This is not coming from New York City. It's an upstate race, and the upstate economy here is in shambles, and I think people need to realize that Governor Cuomo has paid lip service, but he hasn't really done anything to turn this state around," Astorino said.

The Republican said Cuomo is the only person he wants to debate, and does not want to involve third party candidates, like Howie Hawkins.

"There's really only one of two people who are going to win this race for governor. It's going to be either me or Andrew Cuomo. And the people of Binghamton, and the people of the Southern Tier, have a right to hear as in depth as possible how both of us foresee governing the state over the next four years," Astorino said.

In reply to Astorino's press conference, Cuomo's campaign office said, "Rob Astorino has taken so many sides of various issues, he could hold eight debates just with himself. Which Rob is going to show up -- the candidate who promised to cut property taxes by 20 percent or the county executive of the highest taxed county in the nation?"