Republican NYC mayoral hopefuls spar over police

A debate featuring the Republican candidates in the New York City mayor’s race has been punctuated by testy exchanges.

Joe Lhota (LOH’-tuh) and John Catsimatidis (kat-sih-mah-TEE’-dihz) snapped at each other Wednesday over funding for Catsimatidis’ plan to put police officers in high-crime public-housing buildings.

33e58590-e39b-4d44-9aba-35768a932e5e Republican NYC mayoral hopefuls spar over police

Lhota exclaimed “don’t make up numbers” to Catsimatidis. When Catsimatidis disputed that, Lhota asked him why he was so angry.

Lhota served as deputy mayor under Rudolph Giuliani (joo-lee-AH’-nee) and steered the Metropolitan Transportation Authority through Hurricane Sandy. He’s led the polls all campaign.

But Catsimatidis remains within striking distance. And a poll last week indicated nearly a third of the electorate is undecided.

Longshot candidate George McDonald also participated in the debate, the first televised showdown of the campaign’s final two weeks.

The primary is Sept. 10.