BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Another day, another controversy for prospective congressional candidate Carl Paladino.
Republican former attorney general candidate Keith Wofford condemned Paladino for racism he said was directed at him when he ran for the office in 2018.
Wofford, a Black attorney who grew up in Buffalo and lives in New York City, said in a statement on Twitter Friday there have been many times he has stood up for Republicans who other people have called racist, but in the case of Paladino, he is not simply "racially insensitive" or "unsophisticated."
He called the candidate for New York's 23rd Congressional District and former GOP gubernatorial candidate a "straight-up, old-school racist."
"And I know this from my personal experiences in 2018, carrying the party's banner in New York State," he continued.
Specifically, Wofford is reffering to an incident documented by City and State following the 2018 party convention where he was nominated for attorney general. According to the story, Republican insiders said Paladino urged party officials not to nominate a Black man as they gathered for drinks at a bar the night before the vote.
Paladino told the publication he had urged then-GOP chair Ed Cox not to nominate someone "simply because he is a Black guy from a big firm in New York that's going to put up $100,000 for him."
"Other Repubicans, in fact, all of them that I know, were disgusted by Carl's racism toward me, and rejected it. The people of Western New York and the Southern Tier know Carl is racist and they deserve better," Wofford continued in his statement.
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Paladino is expected to submit petitions Friday to get on the ballot in the 23rd District. Current GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy has already submitted his own petitions, setting up a high-profile primary.
Langworthy, who was the Erie County GOP chairman and supported Wofford in 2018, said he would let the former attorney general candidate's statement speak for itself.
"I know there was a major disagreement in the bar. I have not seen Keith's exact statement or any of that yet, but Keith is a man of great integrity," Langworthy said.
Wofford said Paladino does not belong in Congress and if he wins the primary, he hopes he loses in November.
"And if Carl is seated, the GOP should immediately announce he will have NO committee assignments," he continued. "I urge my fellow Republicans in the Southern Tier and across New York to reject Carl - we should keep our principles, and advance them, without the taint that Paladino brings."
Paladino has not responded to our request for a response to Wofford's statement. Facing other accusations of racism in the past, he has steadfastly maintained he is not a racist.