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Paladino says he's still in Trump's good graces

Carl Paladino said Monday that he is in good standing with President-elect Donald J. Trump and his transition team – that it is "business as usual."

Paladino's standing with the president-elect had been questioned after Trump's transition team recently condemned derogatory remarks made by Paladino against President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.

And on Monday, the New York Daily News reported that Paladino was not involved in the planning of an upcoming fundraiser to be held for Trump in Buffalo – possibly suggesting Paladino was on the outs with the president-elect.

But Paladino said he is sponsoring a separate fundraiser for Trump, and also will attend the transition team fundraiser featuring Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.

"I'm not cut out," he said. "It's only in the hearts and minds of the progressives and those haters out there that it means something else."

He did not comment when asked why there were separate fundraisers.

Asked about his current activities with Trump and the transition team, Paladino said they are private.

"The Trump campaign made one remark concerning my remarks. That's it," he said. "It doesn't affect anything. It never has and it won't."

[Related: Outrage and calls for Paladino to resign grow over Obama comments]

Meanwhile, citizens continue to demand Paladino's removal from the Buffalo School Board.

Oust Paladino, a multicultural women's group dedicated to removing Carl Paladino from the Buffalo School Board, will gather on the steps of City Hall at noon Tuesday.

The organization will ask Mayor Byron Brown to demand Paladino's resignation or removal from the board.

One-hundred African-American women plan to be at the front of the group in symbolic representation of the first lady, who was targeted by Paladino in a recent Artvoice article.

The group said Paladino's remarks about the president and first lady were inappropriate in public discourse and damaging to children, especially African-American children.

Mayor Brown has already called for Paladino's resignation, his office said Tuesday. Brown stated that Paladino should "do the right thing and resign from the school board" during a press conference about the New Year's Eve ball drop Thursday. Brown has no authority to remove a school board member.

"There's a process, but the mayor is not part of that process," said Michael J. DeGeorge, the mayor's spokesman.


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