One day after he defended a controversial remark he made about homosexuals, New York GOP gubernatorial nominee Carl Paladino apologized for the comment.
Paladino said over the weekend in a speech to a group of Orthodox Jews that he does not want children "to be brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid or successful option. It isn't." On Tuesday evening, he apologized for the comment and said he "could have chosen better words."
Paladino has found himself in hot water several times on the campaign
trail. He got into a scuffle with a reporter after accusing Cuomo of
having an extramarital affair during his 13-year marriage to Kerry
Kennedy and faced questions about fathering a child out of wedlock.
The fiery candidate, who faces Democrat Andrew Cuomo, on Monday pushed back against criticism over his speech, saying he is not homophobic and his words had been distorted by Cuomo and the media.
The Buffalo-area businessman reiterated he is not anti-gay and said he would reach out to leaders in the gay and lesbian community "to educate me on how to better represent my support for the rights of all citizens."
"If elected as your governor I will stand and fight for all gay New Yorkers rights," he added. "I ask you for forgiveness on my poorly chosen words and the publication by others not involved with our campaign of unredacted script that did not reflect my oral statement or match my personal feelings."
Most polls show Paladino trailing Cuomo, the state's attorney general, by double-digits.