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David Paterson campaigns for his former running mate's rival, Scott Stringer

Former Gov. David Paterson threw his support behind Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer in the City Comptroller race.

Credit: @Stringer2013/Twitter Credit: @Stringer2013/Twitter

Former Gov. David Paterson campaigned for Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer Monday, a week after a poll suggested Paterson's old running mate had strong support from black voters in in the City Comptroller primary race.

Paterson ran with former Gov. Eliot Spitzer in the 2006 gubernatorial election. In 2007, Paterson became Lieutenant Governor and took over the top office the following year when Spitzer resigned after being linked to a prostitution scandal.

In a robo call to Harlem voters Sunday evening, Paterson explained his support, highlighting Stringer's record in the mostly-black Harlem community.

"Scott Stringer has fought for affordable housing, to keep drugs off of our streets and give more opportunities to minority and women-owned businesses," Paterson said.

Theendorsement comes the week after a poll suggested Spitzer had strong support among black voters in the city. Hazel Dukes, president of the NAACP New York State Conference, also campaigned with Paterson and Stringer Monday morning.

"It's not the first time he'll be in Harlem—he's been in Harlem for over 30 years, helping Congressman Charles Rangel, myself and also many leaders in our community to try to make ourneighborhoods as good as any other," Paterson said in the robo call.

During a campaign stop in Harlem Monday morning, Paterson wouldn't say exactly why voters should choose Stringer over Spitzer.

"I'm not going to answer the question of why they should choose Scott over Eliot," Paterson said, according to a New York Times reporter. "That's your question and I'm not answering it."

Paterson's support of their main competition didn't faze Spitzer's campaign.

"Eliot considers David a good friend, but from the beginning we've made it clear that the only endorsement Eliot is seeking is that of New Yorkers on September 10," campaign spokesman Hari Sevugan said.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter: @AnnaESanders

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