- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 11, 2014

MINEOLA, N.Y. (AP) - A former state Democratic chairman wants major party candidates for governor to reject a cross-endorsement from the state Independence Party.

Jay Jacobs says in a four-page letter Tuesday that questions have been raised about the Independence Party leadership.

He claims the party stands for nothing, supports virtually no political activity and exists for the financial benefit of the leadership.

Jacobs cited Board of Elections records claiming that more than 80 percent of the $183,577 the Nassau Independence Party spent the past two years went to pay for functions at Oheka (oh-HEE’-kah) Castle.

The Long Island catering facility is owned by Gary Melius (MEEL’-ee-uhs). He was shot outside the castle last month by an unknown assailant.

State Independence Chairman Frank MacKay described the criticism as a public temper tantrum.

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