ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — With an election year around the corner, GOP candidate for Governor and Congressman Lee Zeldin gathered with several others at the steps of the New York State Capitol. Zeldin spoke out against the state’s recently implemented indoor mask or vax mandate.

“We’re here today to call on Governor Hochul to reverse her state-wide mask mandate. It was a horrible rollout,” Zeldin said. 

Congressman Zeldin pointed to New York counties whose leaders’ announced they would not be enforcing the mandate to bolster his position. 

“And the moving goalposts have so many New Yorkers so frustrated with the leadership here in Albany,” Zeldin. “This is actually going to result in a disincentive because of the reasons why many people were getting vaccinated was because they wanted to return their life to normal.”

Zeldin added that lack of testing also hurts the state’s fight against COVID. 

“To have to wait on line for hours for your test is going to result in New Yorkers saying, I’m not even going to bother,” Zeldin said. 

However, Hochul agreed during a press conference in Wyoming County that lack of testing is an issue. 

“What we want to do is make sure that people [who] show symptoms that they get tested, or if they’ve been exposed they get tested because this is how we can stop the spread from getting even more out of control,” Hochul said. 

Hochul said she is working on providing an ample supply of at-home tests to residents, and the state is currently setting up an online portal for New Yorkers to order those kits directly to their homes. 

Hochul added that the state recently received a shipment of 1 million testing kits. First, the kits will be sent to county Health Departments and various healthcare facilities. Next, shipments will go to schools. 

“My goal is to make sure that when kids return to school on January 3rd that they can stay in school,” Hochul said. “They can stay in school if they test negative. We’ll get those testing kids to the parents.”

One Amsterdam mother joined Lee Zeldin’s press conference at the Capitol and said that Kathy Hochul isn’t doing enough for New York’s children. 

“You think our children are not suffering because of masking and forced isolation? You’re wrong,” Abbey Ballard said. “A mother’s heart knows better than this, Kathy Hochul.”

Although Hochul assured that New York won’t be seeing another lockdown, Zeldin said she’s already gone too far in obstructing freedoms.

The mandate will be effective until January 15. After, the state will revaluate whether the regulations will be necessary to keep in place.