Gov. Kathy Hochul, Director of State Operations Kathryn Garcia, MTA Chair & CEO Janno Lieber, and Maimonides Medical Center President & CEO Kenneth Gibbs hold media availability after they visited victims of earlier subway shooting at Maimonides Medical Center on Tuesday, Apr. 12, 2022...(Marc A. Hermann / MTA). Via Wikimedia Commons.

Governor Kathy Hochul (D – New York) would love to unsay her stupidest statement at Tuesday night’s debate against surging Republican gubernatorial nominee, Congressman Lee Zeldin.

After spending much of their showdown discussing burgeoning lawlessness across the Empire State, Zeldin observed of Hochul: “We’re halfway through the debate. She still hasn’t talked about locking up anyone committing any crimes.”

Hochul replied: “I don’t know why that’s so important to you.”

This boneheaded remark recalled Virginia Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s self-detonating words in last year’s gubernatorial debate: I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach.”

Hochul’s self-inflicted wound may prove equally lethal. 

And it should.

According to Hochul’s own Division of Criminal Justice Services, lawlessness in New York State is a growth industry. These violations climbed between 2020 and 2021:

— Murder: Up 4.4%

— Violent crime overall: Up 7.8%

— Aggravated assault: Up 9.5%

— Rape: Up 10.0%

— Motor vehicle theft: Up 10.9%

New York City, which was America’s safest urban center under Republican mayors Rudolph W. Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg, has relapsed into its former self: a frightful, crime-ridden metropolis teeming with deadly maniacs empowered by Bolshevik Bill DeBlasio and untouched by ineffective Eric Adams. These two Democrat mayors turned out to be as tough as cotton candy.

The New York Post reports that psychopaths and other thugs have shoved 25 people onto the Subway tracks this year, three of them since October 16! Two of these victims were hit by Subway trains and killed. The Post also noted that eight innocent bystanders in Gotham have been shot by stray bullets, this month alone.

The New York Police Department’s latest crime data are just as grim. While murder has fallen 14.3%, 2022 has been a banner year for other offenses. Consider the chaos between New Year’s Day and October 23:

— Rape: Up 11.1%
— Felony assault: Up 14.1%

— Burglary: Up 29.9%
— Overall crime: Up 30.4%

— Robbery: Up 33.3%

— Grand Larceny Auto: Up 35.1%

For Hochul to say in the middle of this crime explosion, “I don’t know why that’s so important to you” to lock up criminals is beyond tone deaf, especially since her comment tragically dovetails with the rest of her listless response to crime: She allows vicious assailants to get released, re-released, and re-re-released, as the cadavers stack up.

Hochul welcomed the end of cash bail and, once this experiment in cultural Marxism morphed into today’s Frankenstein monster of mayhem, she stood shoulder to shoulder with this terrifying beast.

I’m looking for the data that shows me that bail reform is the reason that somehow crime is going up,” said hapless Hochul.

Crime-wave Kathy also screams for gun control even, as Zeldin reminded voters in their debate, gun control does zippo about stabbings, Subway shovings, coma-inducing sucker punches to skulls, and so many other murders and brutal attacks that do not involve firearms.

Zeldin knows New York’s deteriorating crime situation all too well.

David Jakubonis confronted Zeldin on the hustings last July 21, shoved a sharp keychain weapon beside the candidate’s neck, and said: “You’re done.”

Jakubonis was armed and threatened a congressman. Who cares? Thanks to the no-cash-bail state law that Hochul adores, Jakubonis was free the next day. After public outrage erupted, he was arrested on federal charges.

Meanwhile, Long Island’s Joel Murphy and Elijah Robinson, 17, were wounded in a drive-by shooting about 2:20 p.m. on October 9, in suburban Shirley, New York. One of these teens hid beneath Zeldin’s front porch. Another crouched behind a bush. A bullet struck a fence just 30 feet from where Zeldin’s twin daughters, 16, did homework at their kitchen table.

So, when Zeldin heard Hochul say, “I don’t know why that’s so important to you,” he could be forgiven for taking that callous crack personally.

New York voters should respond to Hochul’s dismissiveness by dismissing and replacing her with someone who will declare War on Crime: Governor Lee Zeldin.

Deroy Murdock is a Fox News contributor.

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News Contributor, a contributing editor with National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.

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