Niagara Gazette — "The cell phone incident personified a lack of respect,” Restaino said. “Sadly, we've lost a little bit of that somewhere along the way. But if my opponent really cared about respect, he'd have stood up to the Senecas’ lack of respect to us taxpayers."
The 52-year-old Restaino isn't just looking to speak for himself on character issues, though. He brought several community members with him Thursday to fight back against the negative ad, including a former Falls School Board president, two local teachers and a Catholic school principal.
Robert Kazeangian, who served for 13 years on the Falls School Board, hand-picked Restaino to replace him when he retired. He spoke of the candidate's passion and commitment to the community while explaining Restaino has worked his way back into good standing in the public.
"Bob has paid his dues and accepted what has happened to him because of this," he said. "He hasn't hid or shied away from his responsibilities."
Jeanine Fortunate, principal of Catholic Academy of Niagara Falls, also testified to Restaino's passion to help the community as a whole.
"Our community needs someone who'll stand up for what's right," she said. "I believe he'll be a passionate, hard-working advocate for this area in Albany."
Mary Posch, a fourth-grade teacher at the Catholic elementary school, and Michael Esposito, a childhood friend of Restaino's brother and a teacher at Niagara Falls High School, also spoke of Restaino's character.
As for Ceretto, a call made to his office where a staff member said the assemblyman would not be answering his phone Thursday.
A call to the state Republican committee was not returned.Robert Restaino Taking fight to Ceretto