The Weekend That Was
Gov. Andrew Cuomo spent the weekend in Albany – perhaps putting the finishing touches on the State of the State address he’ll deliver Wednesday? – with no public schedule.
There are a lot of topics for Cuomo to choose from while preparing his third annual speech. Just don’t expect to hear much – if anything – about fracking.
VP Joe Biden’s working group is seriously considering measures that would require universal background checks for gun buyers, track the movement and sale of weapons through a national database, strengthen mental health checks, and stiffen penalties for carrying guns near schools or giving them to minors.
White House aides have been in regular contact with advisors to Mayor Bloomberg – an outspoken gun control advocate – who they hope could emerge as a powerful surrogate for the president’s agenda.
A host of Democratic elected officials, religious and labor leaders and activists called for an “immediate and unconditional” apology from Bloomberg to the UFT for comparing the union to the NRA.
NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn distanced herself from her political ally, Bloomberg, saying his NRA-UFT comments “should never have been made.”
Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer urged Biden’s task force to consider a measure to prevent scores of illegal guns from being trafficked into New York, and a measure to make it harder for felons and the mentally ill from purchasing guns.
In Albany, the Senate Republicans are “balking” at stricter gun control measures. The DN says they’re “trapped in a Second Amendment ideology that would repel the vast multitude of their constituents.”
Following the news of Current TV’s sale to Al Jazeera, former Gov. Eliot Spitzer announced he’s ending his nightly show on the network. Asked if he still has political ambitions, Spitzer replied: “Others presume I have the ambitions. Let me leave it at that for now.”
Officials are suggesting that parents of 152,000 New York City children plan alternative ways to get to school as the union representing school bus drivers continues to criticize the lack of job protections in the city’s bus contract bids.
A concerted effort to unseat Speaker John Boehner was underway the day of his re-election to the position, but participants called it off 30 minutes before the House floor vote.
A $10 billion settlement to resolve claims of foreclosure abuses by major lenders is expected to be announced tomorrow.
Former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel’s nomination by President Obama to be the next secretary of defense could come as early as tomorrow. He faces stiff opposition from fellow Republicans.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent blood clot scare has friends and colleagues worried her superwoman schedule has taken a toll on her health.
James Carville said people who questioned the veracity of Clinton’s illness, suspecting she wanted to get out of testifying about the Benghazi attacks, are “inhumane” and “idiotic.”
There’s a treasure trove of information on potential NYC mayoral candidate Joe Lhota for industrious oppo researchers – should he decide to run.
The NY Post editorial page is still talking up Lhota’s candidacy.
A new name has been added to the mix of possible GOP mayoral contenders: Prominent Brooklyn Pastor A.R. Bernard is being encouraged to run by state Republican Chairman Ed Cox. He’s thinking it over.
Bernard lives in Smithtown, LI “for family reasons,” but is relocating to Manhattan.
Scandal-scarred Assemblyman Vito Lopez will have a significantly smaller office — and a rotten parking space — when he returns to Albany next week for the kick-off of the legislative session.
Unlike in 2009, Obama is accepting corporate donations to help pay for his second round of inauguration festivities. So far, fewer than a dozen have contributed.
Apparently, swearing-in No. 2 is not the hot ticket that swearing in No. 1 was.
Erie County DA Frank A. Sedita III has drawn criticism for wanting to “plea everything out” instead of taking cases to trial.
City of Binghamton officials were alarmed by a negative audit from state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s office, but are determined to set things right.
Federal environmental regulators say they’ll release preliminary results from water sampling at sites in Pennsylvania and across the nation as part of their study of the potential impact of fracking.
The town of Geneva may kick off the new year with a tax cap override vote.
School board members and elected officials across the state haven’t given up on the hope that Cuomo will increase education aid.
Yonkers reached a last-minute teacher evaluation deal Friday.
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