There is no question that Mr. Levy will add unpredictability to the race. He is known not only for his Puritan work ethic and stubborn frugality but also for his occasionally incendiary comments, especially on immigration. His detractors say he has stoked the anger of the largely white middle-class residents of Suffolk County, which is grappling with an influx of immigrants who are straining the social service system.
In 2005, Mr. Levy helped orchestrate a highly publicized raid on a house in Brookhaven, where the authorities rounded up dozens of suspected illegal immigrants. He once described foreign women who give birth after moving to the United States as having ”anchor babies,” a term often used derisively by anti-immigrant groups. Asked in a recent interview whether he might have chosen his words more carefully, he was unapologetic. ”There’s no need to,” he said. ”The public is in agreement with me.” [Planned Switch to G.O.P. Stirs New York Governor Race, By Jeremy W. Peters, March 17, 2010]