A Madison Square Garden crowd let New York Gov. Kathy Hochul have a taste of how New York City fans treat underperformers Tuesday as booing filled the arena.
The Democrat attended the game as part of “Women’s Empowerment Night” with the New York Rangers playing the Anaheim Ducks, according to WIVB-TV.
Hochul, clad in jeans and a Rangers Jersey, walked out onto the ice on a red carpet for a ceremonial puck drop, waving as if there was not a boo bird in sight.
“Tonight, we’d like to salute Gov. Kathy Hochul, the first female governor of New York state,” the announcer said as she walked to center ice. “Governor Hochul began her career in public service in the greater Buffalo area, served in Congress and was twice elected lieutenant governor.
“Here to drop tonight’s ceremonial first puck, a champion of women’s rights and leader of the great state of New York, please welcome Gov. Kathy Hochul.”
Many in the crowd were anything but welcoming.
In WIVB’s report on the incident, anchor Dave Greber said, “Now we don’t know why the crowd was booing Hochul. We’ve reached out to the governor’s office and we’re still waiting to hear back.”
Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin of New York, who is waging an uphill campaign to become a GOP governor in the deep-blue state, offered his explanation on Twitter.
“NY Rangers fans are ready to FIRE Kathy Hochul and are ALL IN to Save Our State! Losing is not an option,” he tweeted.
NY Rangers fans are ready to FIRE Kathy Hochul and are ALL IN to Save Our State! Losing is not an option. pic.twitter.com/Pv5NqKjDGH
— Lee Zeldin (@leezeldin) March 16, 2022
Others shared their theories over her reception.
On behalf of the millions of kids she fought in court to keep masked, the 34,000 health care workers she fired, all the victims of her bail reform… Rangers fans let @GovKathyHochul have it tonight. pic.twitter.com/jrP6rKzCeh
— Rob Astorino (@RobAstorino) March 16, 2022
— Adriana Aviles (@nanalatinaAA) March 16, 2022
I have never heard anyone get booed as loudly as Kathy Hochul got booed here at the Rangers game. People have not forgotten what she did to the children. https://t.co/oYwdLiF2qB
— Billy H (@BillyHeym) March 15, 2022
I don’t think I’ve seen a New York Politician get boo’d at a Sporting Event like Governor Kathy Hochul just got boo’d at a Rangers Game. pic.twitter.com/GBNHb21Gie
— Hirsty (@ImHirsty) March 16, 2022
Hochul was lieutenant governor prior to former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s resignation in August. At one point she faced a Democratic primary challenge from state Attorney General Letitia James, but James has since folded her campaign tent, leaving Zeldin her only opponent.
On Tuesday, state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, a Democrat, noted that Hochul is solidly behind efforts to resist changes to New York’s bail reform laws, which some in law enforcement have criticized for allowing offenders back on the street, according to the New York Post.
“People want to exploit the fact that we do not want to incarcerate people because they are poor. So everything becomes quote unquote bail reform,” Stewart-Cousins said.
“I think the governor has been very clear that the reforms that we did were right. The kind of orchestrated message that somehow this was wrong is not true,” Stewart-Cousins said.
But some Democrats are breaking ranks on that issue.
“You can’t be shoplifting on Monday, get a ticket and shoplift at the same store on Tuesday,” said Democratic state Sen. James Skoufis, chairman of the Senate Investigations Committee.
Democratic New York Mayor Eric Adams also has been pushing state leaders to roll back some pieces of the law, according to the Post.
The Rangers gave their fans something to cheer about in Tuesday’s game as they beat the Ducks 4-3 in overtime.
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