by WorldTribune Staff, July 22, 2022
After being attacked by a man wielding a bladed weapon during a campaign stop on Thursday, New York Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin predicted the man would be released from jail within hours.
Zeldin was right.
David Jakubonis, 43, from Fairport, New York, was arraigned overnight in Perinton Town Court on a count of second-degree attempted assault, a felony. He was quickly released on his own recognizance.
In a tweet after the violent incident in Monroe County, Zeldin, who is running as a tough-on-crime candidate against incumbent Democrat Gov. Kathy Hochul, said he expected his alleged assailant to be back on the streets in no time.
“His words as he tried to stab me a few hours ago were ‘you’re done’, but several attendees, including @EspositoforNY, quickly jumped into action & tackled the guy,” Zeldin, who was not injured in the attack, tweeted. “Law enforcement was on the scene within minutes. The attacker will likely be instantly released under NY’s laws.”
Hochul is now being accused of directing her supporters to show up at Zeldin’s campaign event in Monroe County.
GOP strategist Arthur Schwartz and New York GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy pointed out that Hochul’s campaign sent out a press release just hours before the failed attack on Zeldin that blasted out the time and location of several of the Zeldin campaign’s upcoming stops.
In the press release, Hochul urged her supporters to “RSVP” to Zeldin’s upcoming campaign stop.
Hochul claimed that Zeldin and his team would spread “dangerous lies, misinformation, and his far-right agenda at these campaign events.”
“‘Big Lie’ Lee and his entourage of extremists kick off the statewide ‘MAGA Republican’ Bus Tour, which will make stops across the state peddling dangerous lies, misinformation, and his far-right agenda,” Hochul’s release said.
The New York governor also claimed that Zeldin “will be joined by top anti-abortion advocates, NRA enthusiasts, and a cast of extremist groups.”
Hochul urged her supporters to “RSVP to hear about Zeldin’s ‘Election Integrity Task Force,’ and his recent election fraud scandal in which his campaign photocopied over 11,000 duplicate petition signatures.”
— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) July 22, 2022
Governor, you seemed to suggest there should have been vigilante violence by inaccurately describing that campaign event as filled with “far-right extremists.” That is the same language and dog whistle used by Antifa militants to urge comrades to injure or kill targets. pic.twitter.com/OXhXh5J73c
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) July 22, 2022
Ann Schockett, immediate past president of the National Federation of Republican Women wrote in a Facebook post:
Outrageous! Last night in Monroe County, NY, US Rep and NYS Gubernatorial Republican Candidate Lee Zeldin fended off a vicious attack by a man with a sharp object only moments after Zeldin was addressing bail reform. Furthermore, as exactly predicted later by Zeldin, even though the man was charged with a felony, he was released from custody within hours of being subdued by Zeldin’s supporters and being arrested. Of important note made by NYGOP Chair Nick Langworthy present Dem. Gov. Kathy Hochul heir to disgraced Dem. Gov. Cuomo, had directed her supporters to Zeldin’s rally schedule.
This incident is precisely one of many vital and key points of the Gubernatorial election indicating the callous indifference of NY Democratic leadership toward reducing violence, supporting our law enforcement and ensuring that justice is served. It shows the results of the Democrats’ cavalier attitude towards New Yorkers’ safety including our candidates. — and this is a problem being faced not only by NYers!
Thank you, Lee Zeldin, for your years of service in the military and public service protecting NYS and our country. I hope your timely messages and actions are clearly understood and appreciated by my fellow New Yorkers at the polls.