Gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino said term limits are the key to fixing administrative deadlock.
Astorino spoke to students about this belief on Oct. 16 at an NYU College Republicans event in the Kimmel Center for University Life.
“I enacted term limits as Westchester County executive, and I’ll do it as governor,” Astorino said. “It’s one of my key ethics pledges to the people of New York.”
Astorino, who is running against incumbent Gov. Andrew Cuomo to be the 57th governor of New York State on Nov. 4, said he believes that he and the incumbent should participate in a debate about term limits.
“Debates are a critical way, a critically important way to keep democracy working,” Astorino said. “NYU is a perfect alternative to have this discussion [on term limits].”
He then opened the floor for questions from an audience of students and faculty. An audience member asked how he might pass term limits without the backing of the state legislature. Astorino said he was willing to go as far as a constitutional convention to ensure a lasting change.
“First of all, I would call a special session of the legislature,” Astorino said. “I think they’d be embarrassed by the people if they did not vote up or down, yes or no on term limits. The other option of course is in 2017 there could be a constitutional convention, and that’s something I would lead the charge on and take it directly to the people. I think it [would] pass overwhelmingly.”
CAS senior and president of NYU College Democrats Sophie Tunney, who attended the event, spoke about the bipartisan nature of term limit reform.
“In terms of term limits I totally agree,” Tunney said. “I think that term limits should be implemented in the state. I was happy to hear that he was pro term limits, because Albany has been abusing its power, I think, in terms of that.”
Gallatin senior Megan Powers, who is also vice president of the College Republicans and an Astorino campaign intern, said Astorino’s political outlook could be good for New York.
“New York politicians are so ingrained into what they know and what they do, year after year after year,” Powers said. “He is so energetic about coming in and changing all of that, which I think New York really needs.”
Email Rahul Krishnamoorthy at [email protected].