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Rep. Lee Zeldin beats Andrew Giuliani in New York's GOP primary for governor

The Long Island lawmaker, who made his name defending Trump in his first impeachment, will face Gov. Kathy Hochul, who cruised to the Democratic Party's nomination.
Jumaane Williams, Rep. Lee Zeldin, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, Andrew Giuliani and Rep. Tom Suozzi.
From left, New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, Rep. Lee Zeldin, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, Andrew Giuliani and Rep. Tom Suozzi.NBC News; Getty Images

Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., won New York's Republican gubernatorial primary on Tuesday, NBC News projected.

Zeldin defeated a trio of opponents, including former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s son Andrew Giuliani. Zeldin had support from much of New York’s Republican establishment while Giuliani had backing from some conservative influencers and Doug Mastriano, Pennsylvania’s GOP gubernatorial nominee.

As of 11:10 p.m. E.T., Zeldin held a 20-point lead over Giuliani.

Zeldin, who made his name nationally through his defense of former President Donald Trump in his first impeachment, was one of 138 House Republicans to vote against the counting of certified electoral votes after the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

In addition to Giuliani, Zeldin bested businessman Harry Wilson and former Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino.

He will face off with New York’s Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul this fall, who won her primary on Tuesday over New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Rep. Tom Suozzi, D-N.Y., NBC News projected. Hochul is currently serving out the remainder of former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s term after Cuomo resigned from office last year in a sexual misconduct scandal.

Zeldin faces an uphill battle in the overwhelmingly Democratic state, which has not elected a Republican governor since former Gov. George Pataki won a third term in 2002.

Meanwhile, Giuliani’s campaign closed with his father, who is at the center of the investigation into the Jan. 6 attack for his involvement in Trump’s efforts to overturn the election, accusing a grocery store worker of assaulting him at a campaign stop on Sunday. Video showed that store clerk giving him what appeared to be a stiff pat on the back. The elder Giuliani said after the incident that he could have been killed.

That grocery store worker, Daniel Gill, 39, was initially charged with second-degree assault, but prosecutors later downgraded the charge to misdemeanor assault with intent to cause physical injury, according to court records. Prosecutors did add two other misdemeanor counts, third-degree menacing and second-degree harassment, records showed. New York City Mayor Eric Adams, a Democrat, suggested Tuesday that Giuliani exaggerated his claims

In the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor, Lt. Gov. Antonio Delgado defeated activist Ana María Archila and former Brooklyn Deputy Borough President Diana Reyna, NBC News projected.

Delgado, a former congressman, resigned his seat earlier this year to join Hochul’s administration after the indictment of former Lt. Gov. Brian Benjamin.