Jun 18th - 1:02 pm
A reader forwarded a link to Web site that featured this “status Cuomo” ad in which Rick Lazio is trying to get people to donate $29 to his campaign.
That’s an interesting gimmick, breaking down to a dollar for every year (by Lazio’s calculation) the AG has been in Albany.
For the record, Cuomo has only been a statewide elected official since wining the 2006 race to succeed Eliot Spitzer as attorney general. Prior to that, he ran a failed campaign for governor in 2002, worked in the private sector at Island Capital (developer/donor Andrew Farakas’ firm), served as President Clinton’s HUD secretary and founded a housing non-profit in NYC.
The last time Cuomo was actually in Albany was during his father’s tenure as governor, which lasted from 1982 through the end of 1994.
Nevertheless this whole “Cuomo is part of the Albany establishment” line is central to Lazio’s effort to derail the AG’s effort to run against the dysfunction that has beset the Capitol while his own party has been in power.
The on-line ads aren’t expensive, (a significant fact, since Lazio had just over $600,000 on hand to Cuomo’s $16.1 million as of Jan. 15).
Through the magic of cookies, they pop up on a whole host of sites for anyone who has visited Lazio’s campaign Website – even on Cuomo’s own Facebook page, I’m told.
Lazio’s new media guru is Zach Moffatt of Targeted Victory. Moffatt who worked on former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld’s unsuccessful bid to become governor of New York in 2006. He has also worked for Mayor Bloomberg and on the National GOP convention in 2004.
Jun 18th - 12:38 pm
There are probably few people in Albany happier that today is Friday than Senate Democratic Conference Leader John Sampson, who is the subject of a double whammy of news coverage today.
The first hit came from The Post, which reported the IG’s investigators believe Sampson leaked an internal memo to the politically connected AEG, assisting the firm in landing the first Aqueduct racino contract.
(As you’ll recall, the contract deal has since been scuttled due to widespread belief the process was tainted and re-bid while the IG probe is still continuing).
Sampson reportedly believed the memo wasn’t confidential. The IG begs to differ.
The second story has received less attention, since it appeared in the subscription-only Crain’s Health Pulse (you can get it here if you’re a subscriber), but could ultimately prove more problematic for Sampson.
The headline alone speaks volumes: “Sampson intervened to boost sister’s agency.” An excerpt also appeared in the Insider. Here’s a taste of that:
Jun 18th - 11:48 am
Sen. Craig Johnson and Senate Minority Leader Dean Skelos wasted no time in reacting to AG Andrew Cuomo’s call this morning for Gov. David Paterson to put a property tax cap into a budget extender bill to force lawmakers to go on the record regarding the controversial proposal.
“Great minds think alike. Andrew Cuomo’s embrace of my call to include a tax cap in the next budget extender is even more evidence that he is just what this state needs at this very critical time.”
“I once again call on Governor Paterson to heed our call and secure a legacy as a friend to property taxpayers on Long Island and across New York state.”
And from Senate GOP spokesman John McArdle:
“We’d like to remind the Attorney General that we passed a property tax cap almost two years ago when we were in the Majority and had he weighed in then with Assembly Democrats, perhaps it would be law today.”
Jun 18th - 11:00 am
AG Andrew Cuomo subtly upped the ante on Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, calling for Gov. David Paterson to put a property tax cap into a budget extender and force lawmakers to go on the record about where they stand on the issue.
“I’d like to see them put a property tax cap on the table,” the Democratic gubernatorial candidate told the Post’s Fred Dicker on Talk 1300 this morning.”
Asked by Dicker if the cap should be in an extender or a stand-alone bill, Cuomo replied:
“Well, under the governor’s device, it’s the same thing. The governor could say: I want the property tax cap passed. They’re going to say is – the they – well, we don’t want it. We don’t want it? Let’s put it in the extender and define who the ‘we’ is.”
“(Senate Minority Leader) Dean Skelos, are you for or against the property tax cap?…I want to get the individuals on line. And well the Assembly’s against it. Who in the Assembly?…Is Assemblyman Morelle for or against it? Is Assemblyman Hoyt for or against it? Is Assemblyman Cahill for or against it?”
“Forget the Assembly what does that mean the Assembly? When you go into vote it doesn’t say Assembly, it has a name. And that’s my point. The individual’s name and the individual’s position. That’s what this device is doing and that works. “
Jun 18th - 10:28 am
After initially taking a pass on endorsing Assemblyman Adriano Espaillat for the 31st SD seat Sen. Eric Schneiderman is vacating to run for AG, the Working Families Party has announced its support of the Manhattan Democrat.
“Adriano has a consistent legislative record of results on the issues that matter to working families in our community,” said WFP Executive Director Dan Cantor.
“Whether it is making sure our schools get their fair share of funding, our seniors get the services they need or workers have the right to join a union, denouncing immigration abuse. Adriano Espaillat has always been there for working families when it counts.”
Jun 18th - 8:24 am
New Yorkers Against Gun Violence members will be “educating” Sen. Marty Golden’s Brooklyn constituents about what they believe is the Republican lawmaker’s “anti-cop” position on microstamping.
The group will be handing out this strongly-worded flyer – also known as “Lesson #1″ – during rush hours in Golden’s district over the next several business days, according to NYAGV Executive Director Colin Weaver.
The flyer accuses Golden, who is a former cop himself, of being a “puppet” of the gun lobby and urges his constituents to call on him to “stand with law enforcement and vote ‘yes.’”
Golden, as you’ll recall, took a fortuitous phone call during the slow roll call on microstamping earlier this week. The Democrats yanked the measure from the floor when it became clear it was headed for certain failure – apparently by just a single vote.
Golden told me during a “Capital Tonight” interview that he would have voted “no” had he been in the chamber. He would not reveal what pressing “business” had caused him to step outside at such a crucial moment.
Jun 18th - 8:07 am
Senate Democratic Conference Leader John Sampson reportedly leaked confidential bidding information to help the politically connected firm that won the first Aqueduct racino contract.
Influential Queens pastor Floyd Flake personally benefitted from a lucrative – and questionable – sale of publicly-subsidized church housing project some four years ago.
The state pension fund is considering a lawsuit against BP.
The fund has lost $30 million on the oil giant’s slumping shares since the gulf spill.
Rudy Giuliani and his successor, Mayor Bloomberg, disagree on whether President Obama is doing a good job in handling the BP spill.
Giuliani’s divorce attorney, Raoul Felder, said no-fault divorce “makes victims of the wrong people.”
Queens Assembly candidate Steve Behar says bundlers offered to raise him $200,000 if he would change his position and support charter school expansion.
The Times calls on Albany to “finish the job” and pass a budget already.
AG Andrew Cuomo opposes the soda tax and the cigarette tax increase as a means to close the budget deficit.
Jun 17th - 6:59 pm
The Times’ Dining section test drove Sandra Lee’s lasagna. The verdict: “‘Cafeteria-style’ and sweet, even ‘ketchuppy,’ but most of us agreed: we’ve had worse.”
A deal is reportedly near on student MetroCards.
“What’s this coronation of Andrew Cuomo? Why would black leadership in this state coronate him. He has done nothing for us,” said newly-announced candidate for governor, NYC Councilman Charles Barron.
The Cuomo campaign declined to comment on Barron’s candidacy, but Assemblyman Keith Wright stuck up for the governor-in-waiting, saying he’ll have a “very diverse administration.”
Cuomo did not want to take off-topic questions in Buffalo today.
The governor should have more power, a new report from the Rockefeller Institute says.
Wayne Barrett says Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice has gotten “embarrassingly close” to Steve Pigeon.
Gov. David Paterson insisted LG Richard Ravitch knew he was against borrowing but proposed borrowing anyway.
Mayor Bloomberg urged Congress to drop two of the most controversial parts of Wall Street reform.
First Bloomberg defended BP chief Tony Hayward, now he’s on to President Obama.
Retiring Sen. Dale Volker is hosting a fundraiser for the Erie County GOP, even though he doesn’t agree with the party about who should succeed him.
Sally Quinn thinks Hillary Clinton should be Obama’s VP.
Bloomberg helped Staten Island DA Dan Donovan raise more than $150,000 for his AG bid.
The Shinnecocks haven’t bid on the Aqueduct racino and shouldn’t “cause concern” for potential bidders, the Paterson administration said.
The Senate Dems use CapTon as a weapon!
Here’s Rick Lazio’s campaign manager Kevin Fullington with the weekly strategy update, the focus of which is independent voters, who, according to the Siena poll, are moving away from the Democrats. (Vielkind? I’m counting on you to crack that code).
Jun 17th - 6:22 pm
YNN’s intrepid Bill Carey covered AG Andrew Cuomo in Syracuse today and asked him to address the apparent hypocrisy in his acceptance of the state Independence Party line and refusal (for now) of the Working Families Party line when both remain under investigation.
“How do you resolve that issue for yourself?” Carey inquired.
“You don’t Bill until you have the facts,” Cuomo responded.
“Just to make this more complicated – this will be a whole Trivial Pursuit question at some point in life – I am seeking the nomination and I have the designation of the Democratic Party. And I have been nominated by the Independence Party. And then there is the Working Families Party.”
“There is an investigation into the Working Families Party. I have said let’s see what happens with that investigation. And if anything comes from that investigation. We have the summer. A final decision has to be made, So let’s see what happens with the investigation.”
The Independence Party, in my opinion, there was an investigation about a person in the party, and not about the party itself. Those are the facts. It’s not an investigation I am doing, I don’t have any inside information into it. So, it was a different situation then the Working Families Party. That investigation is still ongoing. So, you make a decision when you have the facts.”
Jun 17th - 6:00 pm
Remember that Fort Orange fundraiser for AG Andrew Cuomo I reported on earlier today? Well, it was abruptly called off by the Democratic gubernatorial candidate’s campaign, apparently because someone didn’t realize the Legislature was scheduled to be in session tomorrow.
Here’s the statement from Cuomo campaign spokesman Josh Vlasto:
“This event was planned long ago for day when the Legislature was not scheduled to be in session. Since the Legislature is unexpectedly in session, and so as not to interfere with ongoing budget process, we have decided to postpone the event.”
According to the official legislative calendar, which was agreed to by the leaders of both houses and the governor before 2010 even got underway, the Legislature was only scheduled to be in town either one, three or four days a week in June until the close of the season on the 21st.
Of course, that was long before anyone could have predicted the budget fight would be continuing this far past the April 1 deadline.
It would not have looked at all good for the anti-Albany AG to be raising big money in the shadow of the Capitol -presumably from lobbyists, because who else is free at 11:30 a.m. to drop $750 to $25,000 a head? – while lawmakers and the governor were down the street trying to work out a budget deal.