Paterson: No Concrete Plan to Meet With Mosque Developers

Conservative Party of New York releases ad urging Con Ed not to sell 2nd building to Cordoba Initiative

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    NEWSLETTERS

    AP
    New York Gov. David Paterson

    They still haven't raised the funds to build it, but the controversy won't stop.

    Despite touting himself as someone who could broker a deal, potentially getting the mosque developers to move the site further from Ground Zero, Gov. David Paterson told NBCNewYork that he has no concrete plans to even meet with the Cordoba Initiative.

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    "That would be their choice," New York Governor David Paterson said. "I'm making myself available. It's up to them."

    When asked if it's the government's place to get involved by offering state lands to a private developer for private use, Paterson told NBCNewYork that there's "no attempt to coerce or pressure here."

    Paterson added that he hopes the discussion over the mosque will bring people together.

    Weighing in for the first time, Archbishop Timothy Dolan agreed with the idea for a new site. Dolan evoked Pope John Paul II's intervention when a convent was set to be built near Auschwitz as an example of how a solution could be found. 

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    The issue of the mosque -- whether and where it should be built -- continues to play out on the local and national political stage. The Conservative Party of New York released an ad urging Con Ed to refuse to sell the second building, which they own, to the Cordoba Initiative. That building would need to be demolished according to the developers' plans for the mosque.

    Meanwhile, conservative fire brand Sarah Palin tweeted a link to another ad using 9/11 family members and survivors to protest the site. 

    President Obama stepped into the debate last week, setting off a national firestorm when he voiced his support for the "right" to build the mosque. Asked Wednesday if he regretted upholding the mosque’s right to be built, the President said he had "no regrets."

    Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said she supports the mosque, but would like to know where the funding is coming from. The Muslim Public Affairs Council told NBCNewYork that any funding the Cordoba Initiative receives will be transparent and available to the public to view.