Governor Pataki's own words on the matter, courtesy of Take Back the Memorial:
I view that memorial site as sacred grounds, akin to the beaches of Normandy or Pearl Harbor, and we will not tolerate anything on that site that denigrates America, denigrates New York or freedom, or denigrates the sacrifice or courage that the heroes showed on Sept. 11.I don't sense a lot of arm twisting behind a statement like that.
Governor Pataki's words are in accord with the majority of Americans and certainly a big majority of New Yorkers. Cox and Forkum had a cartoon that illustrated that position very well. "Come along Sweetie... That's not why we're here."
(See also C&F's June 9th cartoon, which nailed the moral equivalence angle.)