Libertarian Party gubernatorial candidate Warren Redlich said he has received a number of media inquiries following a campaign flyer that was sent to voters this week that falsely calls him a sexual predator. A black-and-white mailer sent to homes in the Capital Region says “SEXUAL PREDATOR ALERT — ALBANY AREA” on the outside and has a photo of Redlich and gives his Schenectady address on the inside. It calls him a “sick twisted pervert” who “constitutes a public danger” and said he “hopes to win thousands of votes to endorse his sick alternative lifestyle.” It advises people to call the police if they see him near a public school or in the neighborhood.
Redlich put out a statement stating that he has never been convicted or arrested for any crime, has been married for nearly 15 years and has two children, and is an active member of his synagogue.
“The mailer mentions a blog post Mr. Redlich wrote. Nothing Mr. Redlich has written serves as a basis for this outrage. Any questions about his writings constitute an attack on the victim,” he said in the statement.
In the blog post, which is more than two years old, Redlich uses criticism of “racy” Miley Cyrus photos as a jumping off point to talk about how it’s not unusual to see sexy teenage girls in the media. He mentions Brooke Shields in the Blue Lagoon and Pretty Baby. He noted that William Shakespeare’s Juliet was 13.
“Another take is the notion that men who find teenage girls attractive are perverts. If you look at literature like Shakespeare, and at some historical figures like Sir William Johnson (a prominent pre-revolutionary leader in New York), you get the impression that it used to be normal for men, even much older men, to be interested in teenage girls,” he wrote.
Redlich blames gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino for the mailer, but Paladino said today that his campaign has nothing to do with it.
Roger Stone, a conservative political consultant who is managing former Manhattan Madam Kristen Davis’ gubernatorial campaign, said he had nothing to do with the flyer but agrees with it. A flyer from the Davis campaign that went out this week says Davis is the “real Libertarian candidate for governor of New York.” She is running on the Anti-Prohibition Party line. That mailer criticizes Redlich’s support of higher gas taxes to help solve New York’s fiscal problems.
Coincidentally, the Davis flyer and the mailer on Redlich use the same postal permit number on Staten Island.
Stone said he is “aware” of the flyer on Redlich and, “I find it to be 100 percent accurate.”
The organization that sent it is called People for a Safer New York, but there is no reference to the group on Google, other than media reports from today. The flyer does not promote the election or defeat of Redlich, so it is not regulated by election law, according to Stone. UPDATED: The group now has a website.
Stone said he doesn’t think the flyer was malicious, and it is protected under the First Amendment. He alleged that Redlich “advocates and promotes sex with children. People should know that before they vote.”
“If Mr. Redlich can’t take the heat, he ought to get out of the kitchen,” Stone said.
Redlich requested that the news media not cover the story. “Covering this story rewards the criminals for their criminal conduct,” he said.
The campaign, however, realizes some may have to cover the story and asked that the Redlich’s home address be blacked out in any reproduction of the mailer.
“We will not comment on any civil or criminal legal action that may result from this incident,” Redlich said.