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Zeldin Facing Growing Criticism for Dangerous Stance Favoring Arming Teachers in the Classroom

For Immediate Release: November 2, 2022

Zeldin Facing Growing Criticism for Dangerous Stance Favoring Arming Teachers in the Classroom

New York, NY - Less than a week out from election day, Lee Zeldin is facing growing criticism for recently coming out in favor of arming teachers in the classroom. 

Over the weekend, in an interview with CBS2 New York, Zeldin voiced his support for “arming school safety officers and even teachers.” Zeldin said, “It improves the safety of the building. If there was someone who came into that building, you would be saying, thank God that teacher who was safely and securely carrying that firearm and was well-trained was able to intervene and to save lives.”

Zeldin’s dangerous position quickly drew criticism from Governor Hochul and a variety of gun safety and gun violence prevention groups over the past several days:

  • On Monday, Hochul Slammed Zeldin’s Dangerous Comments: at a press conference in Harlem, Governor Kathy Hochul said, “Lee Zeldin not only supports guns on subways and in places of worship and in our parks and in places like Times Square…he also now believes that the way to make your kids safer is to make sure that every classroom has a gun in it. Let that sink in. Every classroom should have a gun in it.”
  • Governor Hochul was joined by Congressman Adriano Espaillat, Congressman Jamaal Bowman, Assemblyman Al Taylor, Moms Demand Action founder Shannon Watts, and local gun violence prevention advocates and labor allies.
  • On Tuesday, Zeldin Doubles Down On Extreme Stance: When asked about the various groups who oppose his position, Zeldin doubled down while providing no solution on actually keeping New Yorkers safe, saying, “Everyone is entitled to their opinion.” The Hochul campaign issued a statement criticizing Zeldin for doubling down on his dangerous position.
  • On Wednesday, Parkland School Shooting Survivor and March for Our Lives Co-founder David Hogg Endorsed Governor Hochul: “While NY Governor Hochul is making progress to seize illegal weapons and reduce gun violence, Lee Zeldin wants to arm teachers and put more guns in schools. The choice is absolutely clear — support @KathyHochul to keep New Yorkers safe.”