BUFFALO, N.Y. — Developer and politician Carl Paladino has never been a stranger to controversy and it's been no different during the short time he's been a candidate for Congress in New York.
The left-leaning not-for-profit research center Media Matters for America unearthed a February radio interview given by Paladino while a guest on a weekly radio program that airs on WBEN in Buffalo where he described the kind of leader America needed, with at least one notable quality of Adolf Hitler.
Specifically, he said America needed someone with Hitler's ability to inspire crowds.
“I was thinking the other day about somebody had mentioned on the radio Adolf Hitler and how he aroused the crowds. And he would get up there screaming these epithets and these people were just — they were hypnotized by him. That's, I guess, I guess that's the kind of leader we need today. We need somebody inspirational. We need somebody that is a doer, has been there and done it," Paladino said during the February 13, 2021, edition of The r-House Radio Show hosted by real estate agent Peter Hunt.
Earlier this week, Media Matters was the first to report Paladino shared a post written by somebody else, propogating conspiracy theories including ones about the mass shootings in his hometown of Buffalo and Uvalde, Texas. Spectrum News 1 later confirmed he also forwarded the post to email contacts and said he "carelessly" republished without clearly reading it.
He sent a response to Spectrum News 1 saying:
"Any implication that I support Hitler or any of the sick and disgusting actions of the Nazi regime is a new low for the media. The context of my statement was in regards to something I heard on the radio from someone else and was repeating, I understand that invoking Hitler in any context is a serious mistake and rightfully upsets people. I strongly condemn the murderous atrocities committed against the Jewish people by Hitler and the Nazis.”
In fact, the media refuses to include my public statement from earlier:
'There are some things in this world that we must all be angry about. During World War II, all decent people were angry at Hitler's extermination of six million Jews in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. During the days of the civil rights battle here in the United States, all decent people were angry at the brutal mistreatment of black people down south.'"
Paladino announced he would run for New York's new 23rd Congressional District nearly a week ago after Rep. Chris Jacobs dropped out of the race. Jacobs lost the support of the Republican and Conservative parties following comments in support of new gun laws including a federal ban on AR-15-style rifles.
Paladino has said he has collected the necessary amount of signatures to get on the ballot for an expected August primary that could include multiple candidates, including state GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy. The new district stretches from Erie County to Chemung County.
House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik, who represents New York's North Country, has endorsed Paladino. He has also met with former President Donald Trump, who has not yet made an endorsement in a potential race between Langworthy and Paladino, both of whom were early and loyal supporters to the former president.