Liz Benjamin

This user hasn't shared any biographical information

Homepage: http://nystateofpolitics.com


Posts by Liz Benjamin

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City and Suffolk County.

At 6:30 a.m., GOP Nassau County executive candidate Jack Martins greets commuters, Bellmore train station, Long Island.

At 8:30 a.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams addresses an audience the day after the New York City primaries at Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s Brooklyn Newsmakers event, Brooklyn Law School, 250 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 8:45 a.m., Martins stops by the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters apprentice training facility, 270 Motor Parkway, Hauppauge, Long Island.

At 10:30 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Cuomo will deliver remarks at a ribbon cutting ceremony at the new Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island, 2 West Loop Rd. (LG Kathy Hochul will also attend).

Also at 10:30 a.m., Democratic state Sen. George Latimer will formally kick off his Westchester County executive campaign, with a sharp critique of incumbent Republican Rob Astorio’s record, 36 Tuckahoe Rd., Eastchester.

Also at 10:30 a.m., GOP NYC mayoral candidate/Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis holds a media availability, Ozone Park Senior Center, 103-12 101st Ave., Jamaica, Queens.

Also at 10:30 a.m., the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York, the state Association of Fire Chiefs and the state Association of Fire Districts call on Cuomo to sign legislation providing coverage for volunteer firefighters diagnosed with certain types of cancer, Valhalla Fire Department Headquarters, 330 Columbus Ave., Valhalla.

At 12:30 p.m., de Blasio and NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray greet volunteers, 325 Gold St., Brooklyn.

At 12:45 p.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, Central Islip Senior High School, Little Theater, 85 Wheeler Rd., Central Islip, Long Island.

At 5:30 p.m., U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, will host the 16th annual New York Farm Day, Kennedy Caucus Room, Room 325, Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C.

At 5:45 p.m., Hochul delivers remarks at NYSAC Women’s Leadership Council launch, Marriott Syracuse Downtown, 100 E Onondaga St., Syracuse.

From 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., the Assembly Minority Steering Committee will be hosting a forum to address the complex issues involved in the prevention of, and response to, domestic violence, Glenville Senior Center, 32 Worden Rd., Glenville.

At 6:30 p.m., the NewsGuild of New York hosts its monthly media mixer, Killarney Rose, 127 Pearl St., Manhattan.

Also at 6:30 p.m., the Civilian Complaint Review Board holds monthly board meeting, JCC Beacon Program at I.S. 49 Bertha A. Dreyfus, 101 Warren St., Staten Island.

At 7 p.m., Martins attends the Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters meeting, Radisson Hotel, 100 Motor Parkway, Smithtown, Long Island.

Headlines…

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio handily defeated a crowded field of challengers to win the Democratic mayoral primary as he continued his quest for a second term as the leader of the country’s largest city.

Facing a group of underfinanced, little-known rivals, de Blasio received 74 percent of the vote. His main opponent, Sal F. Albanese, a lawyer and former city councilman making his third bid for mayor, received 15 percent.

De Blasio will now focus on the general election, on Nov. 7, when he will face the Republican candidate, Nicole Malliotakis, an assemblywoman from Staten Island, and Bo Dietl, a former NYPD detective running as an independent.

The turnout in the NYC mayoral primary hovered just above the worst in modern history, which came in 2009 when just 11 percent of voters bothered to show up in the primary that Bill Thompson won.

Leading by just a few hundred votes, Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin declared victory in the GOP Rensselaer County executive primary, but his opponent, Deputy County Executive Chris Meyer, refused to concede.

Larry Zacarese, an assistant police chief at Stony Brook University making his first run for office, pulled off a resounding upset victory over veteran state Sen. Phil Boyle, who was backed by the party, in the Republican primary for Suffolk County sheriff.

There will be a vacant state Senate seat in the Bronx, after conservative Democratic Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. won a three-way NYC Council primary by a landslide.

Another possible vacancy in the state Senate will be created in November if Sen. George Latimer, who won a Democratic primary last night, manages to defeat incumbent Republican Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino in Novembver.

Convicted felon and disgraced former Queens politician Hiram Monserrate lost his comeback bid for a seat on the NYC Council as voters in his working class district couldn’t look past his history of corruption and domestic abuse, electing Assemblyman Francisco Moya instead.

Syracuse’s Democrats will look to unite behind a challenger who rocked their designated candidate in a mayoral primary. Juanita Perez Williams delivered a stout victory in the primary election, forcing her competitor, Joe Nicoletti, to decide whether he will carry on without his party’s backing.

Shortly after securing the Democratic nomination, Williams said she wants to start building a better relationship between Albany and city hall. She said her first call would be to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, her former boss.

Nicoletti won’t say whether he’ll continue his campaign for mayor on the Working Families ticket. The primary was his third failed attempt at the Democratic Party’s nomination for Syracuse mayor. He unsuccessfully ran on the party’s ticket in 1993.

Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan cruised to an easy re-election victory, taking more than 50 percent of the vote to defeat two challengers in the Democratic primary for mayor. There is no Republican challenger so Sheehan’s primary victory ensured re-election in November.

Also headed for re-election: Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren and Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown, who declared victory in their respective primary races, which they won by large margins.

Thanks to the city’s overwhelming Democratic enrollment, Brown is all but assured victory in November, making him only the second mayor in Buffalo history to secure a fourth four-year term.

Eric Gonzalez won the Democratic primary for Brooklyn district attorney, meaning he likely will become the state’s first Latino DA. Gonzalez, now the acting DA, won in a landslide, with 53 percent of the vote. He has no Republican challenger in November.

More >

Extras

RIP Edith Windsor, the gay-rights activist whose landmark U.S. Supreme Court case struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013 and granted same-sex married couples federal recognition for the first time and rights to myriad federal benefits, who died today in Manhattan at the age of 88.

Three Democrats from states Trump won in 2016 will join the president tonight for dinner as the White House seeks sweeping tax reform, congressional aides said.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is set to release his long-awaited “Medicare for all” bill tomorrow afternoon with the backing of several prominent Democrats – including New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

New York Times white House correspondents Maggie Haberman and Glenn Thrush have a book deal.

New York-based publisher Random House revealed that the untitled book will be “about the first years of the Trump administration, a comprehensive, deeply reported look at a history-making president.” No release date or terms have been released.

Trump reportedly tuned in to Steve Bannon’s interview on “60 Minutes” and thought his former top strategist gave a “forceful defense of him.”

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have handed Democrats their most potent opportunity in half a decade to hammer Republicans on climate change. But instead, they’re mostly keeping quiet.

A group of protesters calling on NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio to speed up his planned 10-year timetable for shuttering Rikers Island greeted him and first lady Chirlane McCray as they arrived at the Park Slope public library just before 8 a.m. to cast his ballot.

De Blasio defended Lower East Side City Council candidate Carlina Rivera, who lives in low-income housing — even though her hubby owns an apartment and spends his time sailing on his rich dad’s yacht.

New York state has agreed to pay a Russian heavyweight boxer $22 million for brain damage he suffered in a 2013 bout the Inspector General later said was mishandled by employees of the state Athletic Commission

Hillary Clinton fans who lined up by the hundreds to grab a copy of her new book “What Happened” wondered what happened indeed when she was late for the event.

Is “What Happened” actually what happened?

The Legal Aid Society challenged the state’s new familial DNA testing proposal, saying the move is an abuse of power.

AG Eric Schneiderman’s office is looking into a pizza festival that wasn’t.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo today announced the first-ever Taste NY Craft Beverage Week will be held Nov. 5 through 11 in New York City.

State Sen. Jim Seward and Assemblyman Clifford Crouch have put pressure on Cuomo to take action to help the Village of Sidney residents waiting for a flood buyout program in the aftermath of Hurricane Irene in 2011.

This month, the Buffalo Police Department plans to select three to five body cameras to test before deciding which would work best, with fourteen vendors from around the country that have offered to take part in the pilot program.

“A box of delicious vegan brownies is on its way from PETA to the Times Union Center, which confirmed that it will no longer host elephant acts after last weekend’s shows by the Tarzan Zerbini Circus.”

Flynn Formally Launches in NY-19

The candidacy of Brian Flynn, a Greene County Democrat and medical device manufacturing company president, in NY-19 next year has not exactly been a secret.

This past spring, Flynn’s name appeared on an ever-increasing list of potential candidates – I believe we’re up to eight at this point? – interested in challenging freshman Republican Rep. John Faso, whose swing district is one of the Democrats’ top targets in the upcoming midterm elections.

And over the summer, Flynn reported raising more political cash than anyone else currently in the race – even the congressman himself – though that was thanks in large part to a $500,000 loan he floated to fund his campaign. (A spokesman for Flynn said there’s no limit at this point to the amount the candidate is willing to spend on this effort, and he also has no expectation of ever being repaid).

Today, however, marks the official launch of Flynn’s bid, which he marked with a video that focuses on the tragic death of his older brother, JP, who was killed in the 1988 terrorist attack on Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, and how that spurred the younger Flynn to a life of service, activism and action.

“My older brother and best friend was killed…and my mother picked up the phone, and she slammed down the phone and said: He’s dead. You look for meaning; why did this happen? Why would someone kill your brother. And I heard my brother talking to me and saying, alright, now you’re living for two of us,” an emotional Flynn recalls.

“So, I was 19 years old, and I get in the car and I drive to Washington to get justice for the victims of this terrorist attack. The government tried to tell us that it could have been an accident. But we knew right away that wasn’t true. I was just a teenager, but I learned when you see something that is wrong, you have to do something about it.”

“We fought tirelessly to get safety regulations for airlines that would prevent this kind of terrorist attack…I’ve been fighting for change ever since.”

Flynn goes on to recount his family’s history – three generations living in the Green County area – remembering that his grandfather was a bartender in Leeds, and his great-uncle Mike Quill “started the union that protected subway workers.”

There’s also some personal testimony from Flynn’s sister, Kerry Mariani, and Lynn Gaffney, identified as “a small business owner.”

The video ends with Flynn criticizing Faso for failing to “fix things” in Washington, and instead working with President Donald Trump to make things “worse” with “chaos, dysfunction, (and) hateful rhetoric.” In particular, the video cites Faso’s “yes” vote on the health care reform bill, which has been a flashpoint for the left that is organizing against the Republican lawmaker.

Flynn also launched a new campaign website today, which can be found here.

Tenney, Brindisi Spar Over Town Hall

Rep. Claudia Tenney, a conservative Republican who, like many of her House GOP colleagues, has generally shied away from public town hall meetings to avoiding becoming a target for liberal protestors, has announced plans to hold an event in Camden next Tuesday, sparking criticism from her 2018 Democratic opponent.

“The people of the 22nd District sent me to Washington to fight for them and to provide an independent voice for the hardworking middle class families, small businesses and family farmers who have been neglected by the Washington elite – and that’s exactly what I have done,” Tenney said in a statement.

“In Congress, I’ve fought tirelessly to revive New York’s manufacturing economy, bring jobs back to America, secure the border, rebuild our military and protect our veterans. I’ve stood up and challenged the failed policies of the political class, while at the same time successfully working across the aisle to deliver real results that benefit our community.”

“I look forward to hearing from the people of the 22nd District, and sharing all that I have accomplished for our region during my brief time in Congress.”

Tenney’s town hall, which will be held at 7 p.m. at Nicole’s of Camden on State Route 13, is only open to NY-22 constituents. It requires an RSVP and tickets are non-transferrable. Duplicate or copied tickets won’t be accepted.

The congresswoman had previously balked at holding town halls, arguing that similar events had become a rallying point for what she deemed “paid protestors” who “have no interest in dialogue.”

She was referring to members of the Indivisible movement – an effort inspired by Democratic operatives and encouraged by national party leaders that has adopted Tea Party tactics to target members of Congress in their home districts to “resist the Trump agenda.”

The congresswoman also cited death threats she had received as another reason she had decided to forgo town halls.

Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi, a Utica Democrat who in June announced plans to challenge Tenney next fall and has been trading barbs with her ever since, slammed Tenney for planning what he deemed a “fake” town hall that is really a “campaign event.”

“It is suspicious that a question and answer session with the Congresswoman would not be sponsored by her official office, so that people attending who need help with a federal agency can receive assistance at the event by caseworkers,” Brindisi said.

“A campaign-sponsored event is simply not the same thing. In addition, attendees may even be screened for party affiliation or other means, since this is a campaign event.”

Brindisi also accused Tenney of being unable to “snap out of campaign mode.”

The congresswoman’s campaign spokesman, Tim Edson, responded with another statement, calling Brindisi a “fake news machine, and a fake moderate,” adding:

“Rep. Claudia Tenney is having a town hall meeting and it is open and being promoted to the general public,” Edison said. “Unfortunately, paid field organizers from the NY Democratic Party are already working overtime to organize protesters to disrupt the event and prevent a constructive dialogue.”

“These protesters do not want to productively discuss the issues with Rep. Tenney, instead they want to use the town hall as a platform for self-promotion.”

“Despite this, Claudia is following through on her promise to hold a town hall meeting in addition to tele-town halls and numerous other public events she has already held throughout the district to continue to be accessible to her constituents.”

Edson also forwarded reporters a photo of several people protesting outside a Tenney event, including Jon Lipe, who is a staffer paid by the state Democratic Committee. Edson accused Lipe of spearheading the organizing effort against the congresswoman, who is among the Democrats’ top 2018 targets.

Here and Now

It’s Primary Day!

Voters across the state will be heading to the polls to choose favorites in intraparty battles, some of which will more or less decide the outcome of the race altogether, thanks to lopsided (usually Democratic) enrollment, though the general election isn’t until November.

Most closely watched will be a handful of mayoral contests in New York City, Albany, Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo.

In all but Syracuse, where the Democratic incumbent, Mayor Stephanie Miner, isn’t seeking re-election due to term limits, the current mayors appear to have a leg up over their respective competitors.

But since primaries are notoriously low turnout contests and therefore difficult to poll and/or predict, a surprise upset is always possible.

Depending on where you live, polls open at 6 a.m. (New York City, where there are also a number of contested Council races, and the counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam and Erie) or noon (everywhere else).

If you have questions about voting – like where to find your polling site – click here if you live upstate, and here if you’re a resident of one of the five NYC boroughs.

Also, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman urges voters experiencing problems or issues at the polls to call his office’s hotline at 800-771-7755 or email civil.rights@ag.ny.gov at any time between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, who is being challenged by former NYC Councilman Sal Albanese, Robert Gangi, Richard Bashner and Michael Tolkin in today’s Democratic primary, will vote with his wife, NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray, at 7:30 a.m. at the Park Slope Library, 431 6th Ave. Brooklyn.

De Blasio and McCray will spend the rest of the day campaigning, both together and separately, with various current elected officials and/or candidates (including Assemblyman Francisco Moya, who is running against ex-Senator – and former felon – Hiram Monserrate for a NYC Council seat in Queens).

When the polls close, de Blasio and McCray will be at Roulette, 509 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn, to watch the returns come in.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will cast his primary ballot at 8:20 a.m. at the Mt. Kisco Presbyterian Church, 605 Millwood Rd., Mt. Kisco, Westchester County. (Recall that he has declined to endorse de Blasio, begging off by saying he doesn’t live in NYC, and therefore can’t vote in that race, but has had no trouble endorsing plenty of other candidates in NYC, on Long Island and upstate).

Another race worth keeping an eye on today is occurring down on Long Island, where state Sen. Phil Boyle is fighting Larry Zacarese, assistant chief of the Stony Brook University police, for the GOP line in the Suffolk County sheriff’s contest. Boyle is the party’s designated candidate, but Zacarese had outspent him by almost 2-to-1 less than a week ago.

If Boyle wins, as is widely predicted, he’s expected to quickly resign his Senate seat so a special election can be held in November. The so-called “regular” or “main line” Senate Democrats are very interested in the seat as they prepare yet another effort to retake control of the majority in the chamber.

Two other state senators are also trying to jump ship in Albany by seeking local elected office, and they’re on the primary ballot today, too.

Sen. Ruben Diaz, a conservative Bronx Democrat, faces a primary in his quest to return to the NYC Council, leaving open the possibility of a resignation by Sept. 20 so the seat gets filled without a special election.

The regular Senate Democrats and their traditional progressive allies (women’s rights and LGBTQ rights groups, in particular) would no doubt very much like to see someone more moderate in Diaz’s seat.

Also Sen. George Latimer of Westchester County faces County Legislator Ken Jenkins in a primary. The two Democrats are seeking the party’s line in the general election to challenge incumbent Republican Rob Astorino, the 2014 GOP nominee for governor and a potential contender for a re-match against Cuomo in 2018.

Latimer has occupied his Hudson Valley seat since 2012. The district, which was redrawn prior to the 2012 election cycle by the Senate Repulicans to ostensibly make it more winnable by one of their own, has been hotly contested in years past, though the Democrats have managed to hold onto it so far.

A calendar of non-primary events – including President Trump’s schedule – appears at the end of this post.

Headlines…

Florida emerged from Hurricane Irma as a landscape of blacked-out cities, shuttered gas stations, shattered trees and flooded streets, while the now-weakened storm kept sweeping northward. Officials are still assessing the impact in the Keys, which was hit hardest.

Meanwhile, the city of Houston is still struggling to recover from Hurricane Harvey, with its population engaged in one giant collective improvisation of finding a place for everyone to sleep after many were flooded out of their homes.

Leading his first commemoration of the solemn 9/11 anniversary, President Donald Trump said that “the living, breathing soul of America wept with grief” for each of the nearly 3,000 lives that were lost on that day 16 years ago.

Attorneys for Chicago asked a federal judge for a nationwide halt to Trump administration requirements that cities enforce tough immigration laws in order to receive some federal grants, staking out a leadership role for the nation’s third largest city in the fight over so-called sanctuary cities.

Congress has not only rejected the president’s proposal to cut the National Institutes of Health as part of a broad reordering of priorities, away from science and social spending; lawmakers from both parties have joined forces to increase spending on biomedical research — and have bragged about it.

Hillary Clinton’s new memoir officially comes out today.

Jennifer Senior of The New York Times reviews Clinton’s new book, calling it “a score-settling jubilee” that “seems to have put 2,864,974 extra cracks” in the former candidate’s reserve,” and deeming it worth reading.

But Senior also says the book, entitled “What Happened,” is “angry” and a “grim reminder of the worst we’ve read about Clinton: She needs a separate storage unit to hold her grudges — and her sets of tiny knives.”

Ground Zero in Lower Manhattan filled up yesterday morning as Americans gathered to commemorate the 16th anniversary of 9/11.

More >

Extras

Though Irma largely fell short of the direst forecasts of raw destruction in Florida, it was starting to make up for that with the discomfort and inconvenience of life without electricity.

NYC paused this morning to remember the 2,983 people who died 16 years ago in the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Family members who lost loved ones on 9/11 read the names of 26 Yonkers residents who lost their lives in the terror attacks. The first plane that slammed into the World Trade Center traveled over the Hudson River in Yonkers down towards Lower Manhattan.

Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani said that while the U.S. is better off as far as the scope of attacks and prevention, the country is still living through the same things that caused September 11.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo today signed legislation to expand unlimited sick leave benefits for public sector officers and employees who developed a qualifying health condition as a result of their heroic response to 9/11 rescue, recovery, and clean-up efforts at World Trade Center sites.

Cuomo also joined more than 400 motorcycle riders who participated in the 9/11 Memorial Ride to New York City.

New York, California and three other U.S. states said they sued the federal government for delaying the rollout of higher “gas-guzzler” penalties for automakers whose vehicles fail to meet minimum fuel-economy standards.

Cuomo today announced that 10 UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters and 55 soldiers from the New York Army National Guard’s 42nd Combat Aviation Brigade have deployed to Florida to assist in the response to Hurricane Irma.

Hurricanes in the southern U.S. have captured the nation’s attention, and the federal funding used to help communities recover. That’s concerning some in New York, where state lawmakers are still seeking federal aid for the months-long flooding along Lake Ontario.

If Trump considers himself “pro-life,” he should reconsider his decision to end a program that allows the children of undocumented immigrants to remain in the United States, Pope Francis said.

Kid Rock, the musician who has been teasing a potential U.S. Senate bid in Michigan, is lashing out at the media, “the extreme left,” and the Rev. Al Sharpton.

DAMAC, the company partnering on Trump’s new golf course in Dubai, awarded a multimillion-dollar contract to a firm owned by the Chinese government — violating the president’s promise to avoid foreign government transactions while he’s in office.

Donald Trump Jr. fired back at liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, who questioned whether Mar-a-Lago had opened as a shelter when Hurricane Irma hit the state, noting it’s located on an island and in a mandatory evacuation zone, “probably not the best idea, but you know, narrative!”

Civil rights icon John Lewis is endorsing Francisco Moya for NYC Council in a race against convicted ex-pol Hiram Monserrate, recording a robocall on behalf of the Queens assemblyman just two days before tomorrow’s primary.

The NYPD is investigating vandalism Trump’s golf course in the Bronx.

A limited number of mute swans would be allowed to stay in upstate under the DEC’s latest management plan for the species, released last week after years of controversy over the huge white birds.

Here’s a cheat sheet for tomorrow’s primary races in NYC.

In what appears to be a first, former Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter endorsed NYC Council candidate Ronnie Cho.

In a deal worth $13.75 million, the drugmaker Allergan has transferred its patents on a best-selling eye drug to the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in upstate New York — an unusual gambit to protect the drug from a patent dispute.

The NYC Education Department is in the market for a high-level official who will oversee enrollment decisions with an eye toward diversity.
This deep dive into the history of the “I (heart) NY” logo is fascinating.

Here and Now

It’s the 16th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

There are observances and remembrances taking place across the state, and flags are flying half-staff on state government buildings at the governor’s direction.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City.

At 8:45 a.m., President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump will lead a moment of silence in remembrance of those lost on 9/11. They will then head to the Pentagon to participate in a 9/11 observance.

Later in the morning, the president will receive his daily intelligence briefing, as well as an update on Hurricane Irma.

NYC mayoral candidate Sal Albanese’s campaign announced there will be no appearances or events today, even though the primary is tomorrow, “to honor the memory of those who died, and the solemnity” of 9/11.

At 7 a.m., NYC is honoring the 2,996 people who died in the 9/11 attacks in a ceremony in Lower Manhattan. Also the “tribute in light,” in which the Twin Towers are recreated in beacons of light, will run from sunset through tomorrow at dawn.

At 7:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul delivers remarks at the Town of Hempstead 9/11 memorial ceremony, Town Park Point Lookout, Blvd., 1300 Lido Beach, Long Island.

At 8:30 a.m, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, Cuomo, Hochul, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli and many other elected officials will attend the September 11 Commemoration Ceremony. Cuomo will then join more than 500 motorcycle riders participating in the 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride at a lunch and ceremony.

Groups of riders will travel from Albany, Ulster and Nassau Counties before converging in Manhattan.

At 7:45 a.m., Vice President Mike Pence and Second Lady Karen Pence will travel to Shanksville, Pennsylvania to commemorate 9/11.

The VP will give keynote remarks at the September 11 Observance Ceremony held at the Flight 93 National Memorial.

Afterwards, the couple will tour the Flight 93 National Memorial Visitors Center, participate in a wreath laying ceremony with the friends and family of the fallen, and then return to D.C.

At 11:45 p.m., Cuomo visits first responders at the Rescue 1 Firehouse, 530 West 43rd St., Manhattan. (Press is not allowed to attend this event).

At noon, SUNY Old Westbury President Dr. Calvin O. Butts joins community leaders and Dreamers to show support and defend Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and urge Congress to enact legislation that protects these young people, SUNY Old Westbury, Student Union, Multipurpose Room A, Old Westbury.

At 12:30 p.m., Cuomo delivers remarks at the 9/11 Memorial Ride Lunch and Ceremony, Jacob K. Javits Center, 655 W. 34th St., Manhattan.

After the lunch, Cuomo and the other riders will depart on motorcycles for a ceremonial ride down the West Side Highway to the World Trade Center site.

At 2 p.m., Hochul speaks at a Port Authority NY NJ 9/11 JFK Remembers event, St. Peter’s Church, 22 Barclay St., Manhattan.

Also at 2 p.m., the NYC Franchise and Concession Review Committee and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation hold a joint public hearing, 22 Reade St., Manhattan.

At 6 p.m, sate Sen. Marty Golden hosts his his 16th Anniversary 9/11 Memorial Ceremony, Marine Park, 3000 Fillmore Ave., Brooklyn.

Also at 6 p.m., NYC Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer delivers remarks at a 9/11 commemoration event, Doughboy Park, 56th Street and Woodside Avenue, Woodside, Queens.

At 6:30 p.m., Hochul commemorates fallen Staten Island community members at a 9/11 remembrance event hosted by SI Borough President Jimmy Oddo, Postcard Memorial, Banks Street, Staten Island. (De Blasio will also deliver remarks).

Headlines…

Irma weakened to a Category 1 storm as the massive hurricane zeroed in on the Tampa Bay region early this morning after hammering much of Florida with roof-ripping winds, gushing floodwaters and widespread power outages.

More than a decade of budget cutting and a rash of government job vacancies are taxing Washington’s ability to cope with a one-two punch of epic storms.

Ousted White House strategist Stephen Bannon said he would have advised President Trump to abolish all protections for young undocumented immigrants to avoid the “civil war” – and potential loss of the House next year – he predicts will follow in the GOP.

Bannon also said that Trump firing former FBI Director James Comey was the biggest mistake in “modern political history.”

Bannon is leading the charge to set up primary challenges against Republican senators who have crossed the Trump administration, potentially undermining the party’s prospects in 2018 and further inflaming tensions between GOP leaders and the White House.

The Trump administration has quietly killed off rules proposed under Barack Obama’s presidency that would have required much tougher flood resiliency in thousands of new and rebuilt homes within flood zones.

With Hurricane Irma pounding Florida, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he’ll push a bill to require cellphones to work on other carriers’ networks during natural disasters.

The Port Authority has a “moral obligation” to honor its promises to 9/11 heroes who risked their lives rescuing a paralyzed co-worker from one of the crumbling Twin Towers, Schumer said.

The parents of an assistant state attorney general were targeted by a hate-filled vandal who spray-painted the word “Jew” on the front door of their stately Bronx home overnight, cops and family said.

A Long Island state Senate seat that could soon become vacant will be the first clue on whether Gov. Andrew Cuomo is truly serious about helping the Democrats take control of the chamber, insiders say.

Cuomo raised eyebrows last week among even some close to him by again appearing at an event on Long Island with lame-duck Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano, a Republican who is under indictment on federal corruption charges.

State Senate GOP Majority Leader John Flanagan recently fired three aides as he looks to re-make his operation heading into a key election year in 2018.

Cuomo still wouldn’t endorse de Blasio over the weekend ahead of tomorrow’s Democratic primary, but said it doesn’t matter because the mayor likely has the race sewed up.

State labor leaders are pushing back against a set of proposed Workers Compensation regulations they claim will slash benefits to injured workers.

More >

The Weekend That Was

President Trump approved a major disaster declaration for the state of Florida to speed up federal funds to Hurricane Irma-damaged areas.

Irma spiraled toward Tampa after inundating Miami and the Florida Keys with a dangerous storm surge and ferocious winds.

The 400-mile-wide storm blew ashore this morning in the mostly cleared-out Florida Keys and then began a slow march up the state’s west coast. Forecasters said it could hit the heavily populated Tampa-St. Petersburg area early tomorrow.

Irma forced the US House of Representatives to cancel its scheduled voting session tomorrow, lawmakers said.

Flights out of Albany heading to Florida have been canceled for several days as Hurricane Irma continues to batter the southeast.

Trump was “very positive” toward a multi-billion dollar plan to build a new rail tunnel under the Hudson River at a White House confab last week, but “the fat lady hasn’t sung yet,” U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said.

In the first TV interview since his diagnosis, U.S. Sen. John McCain, 81, said that he’ll jump right into Senate business this week after getting treatment for his “very vicious” brain cancer.

Trump spent another weekend away from the White House, huddling on Saturday with cabinet members at Camp David.

Hillary Clinton is done running for office — and her final race, the loss of which she says left her “gobsmacked,” still haunts her.

Clinton was so confident she’d become the first female president of the United States that she only drafted a victory speech for Election Day.

Cuomo’s campaign sent out an email to donors inviting them to join the governor at Paul McCartney’s Sept. 17 Madison Square Garden Show for a fundraising event.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio spent today urging voters to head to the polls on Tuesday, as Sal Albanese, his leading rival in the Democratic primary, pushed back against a widely held belief that the incumbent was a shoo-in to win.

Constantinople & Vallone steered $60,900 in campaign cash to de Blasio, but was not required to be listed as a fundraiser with the city’s finance board, the Daily News reported. The mayor said he hadn’t read the story.

The NYT determines there is “near-universal agreement,” that though de Blasio is “on more of a glide path to re-election in New York City than any mayor in a generation, he is still struggling to project his political voice in a job that has long produced towering national figures.”

The mayor unveiled his committee on how the city should deal with the sordid histories of statues other public memorials, but it seems the group will recommend guidelines rather than committing a full review.

NYC Public Advocate Letitia James gave an emphatic “no” to the removal of the Christopher Columbus statue in ​Manhattan, arguing it should remain and be used as a “teaching opportunity.”

With just a month left before Columbus Day, another prominent statue of the explorer located upstate – this time in Binghamton – has been vandalized with red paint.

Cuomo says he has no problem with de Blasio’s commission to review what to do with potentially controversial statutes in the city — but reiterated he will fight to preserve the Christopher Columbus monument in Columbus Circle.

Schumer — while declining to offer a formal endorsement because he prefers to stay out of primary fights — revealed that he had already voted via absentee ballot and chose de Blasio.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Friday called out Navy leadership for its slow response to alleged drunken sexual misconduct at a Pentagon Christmas party involving an aide to service’s top officer, demanding an independent review of the case by the Department of Defense Inspector General.

Some NYC taxi owners say they cannot hold on much longer as they lose riders and fares to Uber and other rivals, and their taxi medallions plummet in value.

A top aide for a city councilwoman up for reelection, Laurie Cumbo, was caught on tape arguing that her primary opponent would struggle in office if she won, because she has failed to keep on de Blasio’s good side.

Veteran Brooklyn Assemblyman Dov Hikind was apparently able to hide payments to a law firm while he was under federal investigation by waiting until now to reimburse himself out of campaign funds for payments made in May 2014.

Fifteen people, down from from 19 originally – applied for the vacant seat once held by recently ousted Buffalo School Board Member Carl Paladino.

Bronx Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj, who is looking to join the NYC Council, has shelled out more cash on the bid than any Council candidate in the history of the city’s campaign finance system, records show.

A Manhattan Democratic club is opposing Lori Sattler’s candidacy for Manhattan Supreme Court for her controversial ruling about abortion, sending 10,000 voters provocative mailings with images of “The Scarlet Letter’s” Hester Prynne.

The Civilian Complaint Review Board recommended that the NYPD discipline the cop who used a banned chokehold in the death of Eric Garner in Staten Island, though a federal grand jury weighing the charges reportedly has been dormant.

Mayor Kathy Sheehan is still maintaining a sizable lead over her two Democratic challengers going into Tuesday’s primary, according to the results of a Spectrum News/Siena College poll.

Incumbent Byron Brown still holds a commanding lead over his two Democratic primary challengers as he seeks a fourth term as Buffalo mayor, according to a new survey by the Siena College Research Institute and Spectrum News.

Brown and his Democratic primary rival, City Comptroller Mark J.F. Schroeder, are both counting on cross-over appeal with various ethnic voting groups in hopes of pulling out a victory on Tuesday.

Brown’s re-election campaign announced endorsements from members of the Buffalo Common Council.

Syracuse’s Democratic candidates for mayor pulled no punches in a pair of debates this weekend with Tuesday’s primary looming.

Cuomo has told labor officials to gather input on the practice of scheduling retail and other workers with short notice. The results could shape potential regulation.

Newsday approves of the “big new clam and oyster restoration program” for Long Island announced last week by Cuomo, but hopes an effort is made to avoid the mistakes of the past.

Groups fighting to give terminally ill people the right to physician-assisted suicide in New York state are gearing up for another fight in the Legislature after the state’s highest court rejected a legal effort to overturn a ban.

A NYC Council candidate is accusing his opponent of shaking him down so he’d drop his bid for the Bronx seat, sparking an NYPD probe into possible criminal coercion.

A college intern working for a NYC Council candidate this summer got a lesson in hardball politics and may have run afoul of election law by registering to vote in two different states.

Rev. Al Sharpton’s daughter Ashley stiff-armed and smacked at a frantic cabbie — who she can be heard calling a “b–ch” — after she grabbed his keys over a beef in the taxi, according to cellphone video obtained by the Daily News.

Assemblyman John McDonald and a small band of state legislative supporters sent a letter Friday urging Cuomo to champion changing the state Scaffold Law the state budget, an issue Rep. John Faso is also taking on in Washington

Hempstead Town Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney said she intends to sue Hempstead Supervisor Anthony Santino to challenge an income cap contained in an ethics package the town board passed last week.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City with no public schedule.

At 12:15 p.m., President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence receive a hurricane update in the Oval Office. Later in the day, Pence and his wife, Second Lady Karen Pence, will join the president and First Lady Melania Trump at Camp David.

At 7:30 a.m., NYC mayoral candidate Sal Albanese meets and greets morning commuters, West 72nd Street subway station, Manhattan.

At 9:30 a.m., state Sen. James Sanders Jr. hosts a screening of “Fences” for seniors, in recognition of Senior Appreciation Month, 159-02 Jamaica Ave., Queens.

At 10 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio will join state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli to release a report on the rapid growth of tech jobs in the city and tour Maven Clinic, a female-founded digital health clinic for women, 394 Broadway, 3rd Floor, Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., the NYC Campaign Finance Board holds a public meeting, 100 Church St., Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito tour Pregones Theater, 571-575 Walton Ave., the Bronx.

Also at 10 a.m., NYC Councilman Vincent Gentile, along with the NYC Department of Sanitation, announces that appointments for collection requests of large items can now be made for large nonrecycling items such as sofas and wooden furniture, 8018 Fifth Ave., Brooklyn.

At 10:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul speaks at the grand opening of TimberFish Technologies High-Tech Fishery, Five & 20 Spirits & Brewing, 8398 West Main Rd., Route 20, Westfield.

Also at 10:30 a.m., NYC Councilman Andy King and NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina unveil a newly purchased flight simulator for Bronx Aerospace High School, 800 East Gun Hill Rd., the Bronx.

Also at 10:30 a.m., Albanese holds a press conference on building market rate housing on public land; market rate tenants to occupy upper floors; “poor floors” for everyone else, NYCHA Holmes Towers, 1780 First Ave., Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., NYS Schools Chancellor Betty Rosa, state Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia and other educators announce the first-in-nation curriculum materials to teach children about sepsis prevention, P.S. 150, 40-01 43rd Ave., Queens.

At 11:30 a.m., de Blasio hosts an ethnic media roundtable, Blue Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

At noon, NYC Parks and Recreation Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver joins Deputy Brooklyn Borough President Diana Reyna and New York City Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo to break ground on a total reconstruction of Stroud Playground, Park Place between Washington Avenue and Classon Avenue, Brooklyn.

At 1 p.m., Transportation alternatives hosts a NYC Council candidate forum to discuss street design innovations and plans for affected neighborhoods due to the L Train shutdown, 150 Greenpoint Ave., Brooklyn.

At 2 p.m., de Blasio will hold a public hearing on, and then sign into law, a package of bills related to law enforcement, inmate discharge outcomes, and juvenile justice, Blue Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 6 p.m., mayoral candidates Albanese, Richard Bashner, Bo Dietl, Robert Gangi and Michael Tolkin, will participate in a debate sponsored by the NYC Political Forum, The Players, 16 Gramercy Park S., Manhattan. (De Blasio will not attend).

Also at 6 p.m., the Ontario County Republican Committee hosts their Constitution Day Dinner featuring guest speaker Rep. Chris Collins and Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb, 86 Ave. E., Geneva.

Also at 6 p.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams hosts “How Not To Die” author Michael Greger, for an event teaching how changes in diet and lifestyle can prevent death by diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and various cancers, Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 8 p.m., the documentary “Company Town” makes its first theatrical debut at Cinema Village, with an introduction from state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, Cinema Village, 22 East 12th St., Manhattan.

Headlines…

The House is postponing completion of work on an eight-bill spending package to fund the government in 2018 amid some lawmakers’ eagerness to return home as Hurricane Irma nears the U.S.

Irma has been pummeling the Caribbean with gale-force winds, sheets of rain and widespread destruction. One of the causalities has been President Donald Trump’s vacation home, Le Chateau des Palmiers on the island of St. Martin.

All five American ex-presidents – Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama – have launched an effort to raise funds for the victims of Harvey.

The White House announced the recipients of Trump’s donation to Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, after the president last week revealed his pledge to give $1 million in “personal money” to support those affected by the storm.

There seems to be a bromance brewing between Trump and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, according to Rep. Pete King, who called a meeting between the two yesterday with other NY and NJ officials “almost like a love-in at times.”

Trump met with Schumer, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and top congressional officials over the $24 billion “Gateway Project,” a massive infrastructure plan to build a tunnel under the Hudson River critical to northeast U.S. transportation.

The White House said the meeting covered work to “repair damage sustained under Hurricane Sandy” and discuss the tunnel project, which state officials say is critically needed to avoid a shutdown of the transit system that NJ Transit and Amtrak use under the Hudson River.

It was Cuomo’s second trip to D.C. to discuss infrastructure projects for New York. He called the White House meeting yesterday “productive,” but also “inconclusive.”

Frustrated with his own party’s leaders in Congress, Trump talked up his suddenly cozier relationship with Democrats, raising the prospect of new deals on government spending and even posting one of his tweets at their behest.

Hillary Clinton said she was devastated and drained after her loss to Trump in 2016, but regained her strength by relying on a mix of prayer, yoga and “my fair share of Chardonnay.”

The former first lady/secretary of state/presidential candidate will appear on the Sept. 13 installment of ABC’s The View and the Sept. 19 edition of CBS’ The Late Show, the respective networks announced.

Colbert will be Clinton’s first post-election late night show appearance.

Federal prosecutors are asking a judge to revoke “Pharma bro” Martin Shkreli’s bail and throw him in jail for a threatening Facebook post about Clinton, according to a court motion filed in New York.

Donald Trump Jr. told Senate investigators he set up a June 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer because he was intrigued that she might have damaging information about Clinton, saying it was important to learn about her “fitness” to be president.

Equifax, one of the three major consumer credit reporting agencies, said hackers had gained access to company data that potentially compromised sensitive information for 143 million American consumers, including Social Security numbers and driver’s license numbers.

Grandparents, cousins and similarly close relations of people in the United States should not be prevented from coming to the country under Trump’s travel ban, a federal appeals court has ruled in another legal defeat for the administration on the contentious issue.

More >

Extras

Donald Trump Jr. told Senate investigators that he set up a June 2016 meeting with a Russian lawyer because he was intrigued that she might have damaging information about Hillary Clinton, saying it was important to learn about her “fitness” to be president.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos declared that “the era of ‘rule by letter’ is over” as she announced plans to change the way colleges and university handle allegations of sexual violence on campus.

Several influential House conservatives are privately plotting ways to use the legislative calendar this fall to push their hard-line agenda — including quiet discussions about possibly mounting a leadership challenge to House Speaker Paul Ryan.

Many Republicans were furious with Trump’s budget deal, stunned he quickly gave in to Democratic demands to pair hurricane relief with a three-month debt limit hike — though getting nothing in return. But he raved about the positive coverage it received during calls today with Democratic congressional leaders.

Former Trump chief strategist Steve Bannon says he’s now going to act as the president’s “wing man” from outside the White House.

Harvey and Irma (Schluter, no relation to the storms bearing their names), 104 and 92 years old, respectively, are celebrating their 75th wedding anniversary.

Graydon Carter, the editor of Vanity Fair, plans to step down from the magazine in December after a 25-year tenure, leaving the role that established him as a ringmaster of the glittery spheres of Hollywood, Washington and Manhattan media.

Democrats are dreading Clinton’s upcoming book tour, and they’re not alone.

Three Assembly members were added prematurely to the state payroll after their November 2016 elections, allowing them to collect almost $17,000 in extra pay, according to data posted today on SeeThroughNY.net.

Dennis Black, the former longtime University at Buffalo vice president who resigned unceremoniously last year, pleaded guilty this morning in State Supreme Court to felony charges that accuse him of stealing $320,000 from a university-related bank account.

UAlbany researchers are helping the National Hurricane Center track Hurricane Irma and are creating forecast models to try and determine where the superstorm could make landfall.

School’s back today for New York City kids, and a lunchtime surprise is awaiting them: Public schools citywide will now offer free lunches to every single student.

The family of the Sachem High School East football player who died last month during a training drill has filed a notice of claim, signaling it intends to file a lawsuit seeking $15 million in compensatory and wrongful death damages.

The city of Schenectady will likely begin conducting background checks on prospective hires soon – a policy that previously only applied to certain positions.

Onondaga County is considering making a pitch to Amazon in hopes of landing the company’s second headquarters, a massive campus that would employ up to 50,000 people and cost $5 billion to construct.

Pills laced with the deadly drug fentanyl that were made to look like Oxycodone have been found in Buffalo for the first time, prompting an urgent alert from the state Attorney General’s office.

Zephyr Teachout made a video showing “the threat monopolies pose to our democracy,” when it comes to immigration policy and jobs.

Here’s a photo of the governor vacuuming trash off the subway tracks in NYC.

Friends and family remembered Lauren Morelle, daughter of Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle, who lost a fierce battle with breast cancer last month.

Cuomo said the fine for littering in the New York City subway system will double from $50 to $100 as part of a larger effort to reduce delays related to track fires caused by debris.

Nathalie Emmanuel, who stars on the hit HBO television series “Game of Thrones,” will be in Manlius and around the Syracuse area in the coming weeks making a new movie.