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NY GOP moves to knock ‘The Biggest Loser’ trainer Cara Castronuova out of Senate primary

A former trainer on the TV show “The Biggest Loser” is running for the U.S. Senate, but the influential Republican Party is trying to knock her out of the Republican primary.

Powerful party insiders are seeking to disqualify former Golden Globe boxer Carla Castronuova from competing against popular Democratic incumbent Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who is in her third term. .

Castronuova first needs to win a primary against former New York City police detective Mike Supply-Corn, the Republican nominee.

Queens Republican Party Chairman Anthony Nunziato objected to the signatures collected to remove Castronuova from the race, according to documents filed with the state Board of Elections.

New York Republican Party insiders are trying to remove Senate candidate Carla Castronuova from the ballot. Instagram/@caracastronuova
Anthony Nunziato, chairman of the Queens Republican Party, objected to the signatures Castronuova collected to appear on the ballot. Gregory P. Mango

A snapshot taken by Mr. Castronuova’s campaign shows that the Republican operative who mailed the challenge papers on Mr. Nunziato’s behalf was convicted felon John Hagerty, who is close to the state’s Republican leadership. There is a relationship.

Hagerty was convicted of stealing $750,000 from former Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s trust fund.

The fund sent $1.2 million to the state Independence Party, which acted as an intermediary to raise money for Mr. Hagerty for an election-day ballot security operation in the 2009 mayoral race.

Castronuova said she believed the petition to disqualify her was “retaliation” after previously suing the state Republican Party and the Board of Elections. Instagram/Carla Castronuova

A separate petition challenge has been filed against businessman Josh Eisen, who is also seeking voting rights to run in the Republican primary for Senate.

“I was very disappointed to learn that only two people opposed my petition: Queens Party Chairman Anthony Nunziato and a staff member of the Board of Elections. No other citizen has opposed my petition,” Castronuova said on Sunday.

She recently sued the state Republican Party and the Board of Elections over ballot requirements and said she believed the proposal to disqualify her was “retaliation.”

Mr. Castronuova is a former trainer on the reality show “The Biggest Loser.”

“People across the state have a right to know why a convicted felon hiding behind Republican elites is making decisions that have huge implications for our state and our elections.” Castronuova said.

“The people want primaries and choice. I will fight this to the end. The people have the right to choose their candidates, and access to fair voting is a constitutional right.”

At the state party convention in February, delegates nominated Saprakorn as their standard bearer.

Castronuova is seeking to run against incumbent Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc (via Getty Images)

Former President Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for the White House in 2024, also supported Supply Corn.

Both Mr. Castronuova and Mr. Eisen failed to receive the 25% of weighted delegate votes required to qualify to vote in the Republican primary.

The only other way to get on the ballot is to collect 15,000 signatures from registered Republicans, with at least 100 signatures required from 13 of the 26 congressional districts.

Mr. Castronuova poses for a selfie with former President Donald Trump. Instagram/@caracastronuova

Nunziata on Sunday defended his decision to disqualify Castronuova from running.

“We want to make sure her signature is a clean one. She has to prove she has the right amount of signatures to fill out the ballot. It’s checks and balances. That’s it,” Nunziata said. he said.

Queens Republican leaders confirmed that Mr. Hagerty had filed a challenge with the BOE, but said it was “somewhat unlikely” that Mr. Castronuova would make it an issue.

“It’s ridiculous. Get over it,” Nunziato said.

Hagerty did not respond to requests for comment.

Both Mr. Castronuova and Mr. Eisen claim to have submitted more than 15,000 valid signatures, but it remains to be seen whether they can withstand challenges under New York’s High Technology Elections Law.