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Cuomo visited separately with the two brothers who lead factions of the Satmar sect, Rabbis Aron and Zalman Teitelbaum, and with the Pupa and Wein rebbes, Yakov Greenwald and Anshel Katz.
At the meeting with Rabbi Aron Teitelbaum, Lieb Glantz, a longtime political activist in the community, said Cuomo "didn't come here for an endorsement because this community would have endorsed you regardless. We are here to let you now we are family. And this is a community that has fought very hard for your father."
The elder Cuomo endeared himself to the Satmar community by ardently supporting a special school district in the enclave of Kiryas Joel for learning disabled children, even though courts repeatedly found that the one-school district was unconstitutional.
Andrew Cuomo pledged to continue the work done by outgoing Gov. David Paterson to fund a tuition assistance program that would include rabbinical colleges. If Paterson, who is not seeking re-election can't complete the program "I will make it a priority for me in my administration," he said.
Education is a key issue for Orthodox Jews in this election, said public relations consultant Ezra Friedlander, who attended the chasidic meetings with Cuomo.
"How the government can be more helpful to yeshiva parents is probably the most important issue of concern to the Orthodox Jewish community by far," said Friedlander.
Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Op-Ed on NYS Governor Cuomo's visit to Israel
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