Jul 28th - 2:08 pm
A political action committee for the House Republicans on Thursday is targeting Democratic candidates in swing districts to link them to Hillary Clinton’s handling of her email as secretary of state, including Colleen Deacon who is running for a Syracuse-area House district.
The group, the Congressional Leadership Fund, has launched the website ImWithCareless.com, highlighting the sound-bite ready description by FBI Director James Comey in describing Clinton’s use of a private email server.
“Putting politics before principle, Colleen Deacon is ‘Ready for Hillary’ regardless of how untrustworthy and reckless she’s found by voters or even the FBI,” said Ruth Guerra, Deputy Communications Director for Congressional Leadership Fund. “Democrats proudly embracing Hillary Clinton will have to explain to voters why they continue to stand by her record of scandals and dishonesty.”
Deacon is among the dozen Democrats running in battleground House districts who are being included in the round of criticism by the PAC through the website.
Deacon is running against incumbent Republican John Katko for the 24th congressional district. The seat has perennially changed hands over the last several cycles between both parties.
Katko unseated Rep. Dan Maffei in 2014, making the district a top target to be flipped by Democrats this cycle.
Jul 22nd - 6:45 am
From the Morning Memo:
It was a rollicking and unpredictable convention in Cleveland for national Republicans.
After a week that included charges of plagiarized speeches and a non-endorsement from the nominee’s former rival, New York GOP officials insisted the party is unified.
“Any convention is about unity,” said Sen. Tom O’Mara, a Republican from the Elmira area. “Everyone here from across the country has been fantastic. The convention has been fantastic. It’s all about coming together.”
But the remarks by Senator Ted Cruz this week highlighted fissures within the party nationally as well in New York, whose delegation included enthusiastic boosters of Donald Trump. State Republican Chairman Ed Cox had hesitated in endorsing Trump, but now is on board.
“No, it’s a problem with Ted Cruz,” said State Chairman Ed Cox, “and it’s his own problem.”
Other Republicans leaders agreed the issue isn’t with broad unity, but with Cruz himself.
“I think it’s an outlier, ultimately,” said Broome County Chairman Bijoy Datta. “I’ve talked to people all over the country over the course of this week and everyone is lining up behind Mr. Trump. He won the nomination, he won the primary. He got the official nod this week.”
Still, a number of Republicans from New York stayed away from the convention and some remain hesitant to embrace Trump’s candidacy. Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb says the unifying personality may ultimately be the presumed Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton.
“The race is being Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton,” said Brian Kolb, the minority leader of the state Assembly. “That’s the choice that voters are going to have across this country in November. That’s really anyone who has supported John Kasich or Marco Rubio or whomever, has to realize this is the race we are now dealing with.”
Democrats meet next week in Philadelphia and have their own primary wounds to close following a brutal primary contest between those who backed Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Jul 21st - 5:09 pm
Republican Carl Paladino, the co-chairman of the state campaign co-chairman for Donald Trump, blasted an email out Thursday afternoon with a meme suggesting Sen. Ted Cruz would mow the lawn at a Trump White House.
“After I move into the White House,” the image states. “I’ll hire you to mow the lawn.”
At the same time, Paladino included this text:
“He could have blown the roof off the building, attained statesman status and be appointed to the Supreme Court in January but he chose to implode with self love and be one of those timid souls who knows neither victory or defeat.”
Cruz drew the ire of Republicans at the convention in Cleveland on Wednesday and into today when he refused to endorse Trump in his speech.
The image calls to mind the stereotype of Hispanic landscapers and gardeners; Cruz is of Cuban descent.
The former Republican nominee for governor in 2010 has had a history of making racially tinged comments and jokes, most recently tweeting “Lynch Loretta Lynch” — a post Paladino said was sent in error by an assistant.
Jul 21st - 2:19 pm
Add former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani to the list of prominent New York Republicans who think Donald Trump can win Democratic-heavy New York.
Giuliani, speaking to the Republican delegation breakfast on Thursday morning, said Trump’s chances of a victory are especially good in the upstate region, which has more GOP voters per capita.
“We’ve got some pretty good surrogates for him in New York and we are not going to give up New York,” Giuliani said, his hoarse voice increasingly rising. “Hillary, we are going to kill you in upstate New York. You are finished. Hillary, you are finished in Nassau and Suffolk and Westchester and Putnam and Orange.”
Polls have shown Clinton, a former U.S. senator from New York who moved to state in 2000, leading Trump by double digit percentage points.
Giuliani also made a plea for allowing high-volume hydrofracking in the state, saying it would restore upstate New York’s industrial might.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration moved to ban the natural gas extraction process in 2014, but Giuliani did not mention the governor by name.
“How about putting people back to work with tracking, hydraulic drilling? How about we rebuild upstate New York the way it used to be, one of the great industrial capitals of the world,” he said.
“God has put the resources in our Earth to do it. Pennsylvania is doing it and they did it under a Democratic governor, Ed Rendell. He cared about his people more than he cared about out of the control environmentalists.”
Jul 21st - 1:47 pm
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani suggested to New York GOP delegation on Thursday morning the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email usage as secretary of state could be “re-opened” under Donald Trump’s presidential administration.
The remarks are part of a broader theme from the Republican National Convention in which delegates have enthusiastically called for Clinton’s imprisonment after FBI Director James Comey announced no charges would be brought following a lengthy investigation.
“Why wasn’t she prosecuted? Now we can’t do anything about that — yet,” Giuliani said. “If Donald Trump becomes president, the statute of limitations would not be gone, there’s no double jeopardy because she’s never been put on trial. We can re-open the case.”
Amid brief and occasional chants of “lock her up!” at the delegation breakfast, Giuliani even jokingly suggested he could do it himself.
“Joe and I were prosecutors,” he said turning to Nassau County Chairman Joe Mondello. “Joe, what do you think we go back one more time and if Trump gets elected we go back and try the case?”
Looking at Rep. Dan Donovan, a former Staten Island district attorney, he said, “Dan, want to help? Dan? You’ll help us?”
The comments dovetail with remarks Gov. Chris Christie this week made in his convention speech in which he “indicted” Clinton a range of crimes including her handling of emails with top secret and confidential information as well as the response to the Benghazi terrorist attack.
It’s unusual in the modern political era for one major party to call for the imprisonment of the opposition’s leader. Nevertheless, Trump has made that theme part of his fundraising.
“Hillary For Prison” t-shirts are for sale by vendors outside of the convention hall, while the “lock her up!” chants have punctuated addresses during the convention.
Giuliani, meanwhile, took a longer view in his remarks New York Republicans with a decided 1990s tinge. He criticized both Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, for his sex scandals, using the Lincoln Bedroom to house donors and the land deals made by the Rose Law Firm.
“If you like it the way it is, you’re going to go with the quintessential Washington insider,” he said. “She really should be the Fort Leavenworth insider.”
In a reference to the book and movie “Primary Colors” that fictionalized Bill Clinton’s 1992 run for president, Giuliani said, “Bill Clinton — our predator president, with his wife who enabled him, aided him, covered up for him and headed the Bimbo Squad. They had to go scare them to keep their mouths shut.”
It was yet another glimpse of what could have been in 2000, when Clinton ran for the U.S. Senate in New York and Giuliani was preparing to run on the GOP side. He ultimately stepped aside for Rep. Rick Lazio after the then-mayor was diagnosed with prostate cancer.
Speaking with reporters outside of the delegation breakfast, Giuliani defended the use of the term “bimbo squad.”
“She’s an enabler of her husband’s predatory behavior,” he said. “It’s all part of one thing.”
He continued on his theme of the 90s scandals as well, linking them to the money contributed to the Clinton Foundation.
“It isn’t in a vacuum, it’s part of a pattern that goes back to Little Rock, Arkansas,” he said. “It’s part of selling the Lincoln bedroom. It’s the Marc Rich part. Explain to me the Marc Rich pardon and how the Clinton’s are legitimate people. If you come to that conclusion, you’re not very bright.”
Jul 21st - 12:29 pm
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani on Thursday morning praised the son of Republican nominee Donald Trump, Donald Trump Jr., saying he’d make a “helluva candidate” for mayor.
Trump Jr.’s address at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday was praised by Republicans and stoked speculation he may also run for office one day.
“After the speech I heard the other night, I would think he’d be one helluva candidate,” Giuliani told reporters after speaking to the New York Republican delegation earlier this morning. “I would have to know more about what he’d do, but he’d be a great candidate.”
The Trump campaign has put the candidate’s family front and center this convention, with Trump’s daughter Ivanka introducing her father before his acceptance speech this evening.
It’s been double-edged sword, however, as Melania Trump’s remarks have fallen under scrutiny for plagiarizing a portion of a speech given by Michelle Obama in 2008.
Giuliani was withering in his criticism of incumbent Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio, saying he’s failing the city.
“I believe somebody has to replace Bill de Blasio because if someone doesn’t the city is going to decline as it is declining already,” he said. “Everyone tells me the city looks worse. Everyone tells me homelessness is worse.”
Jul 21st - 9:36 am
New York Republican Chairman Ed Cox was in the Trump family box during Texas Sen. Ted Cruz’s Wednesday convention speech in Cleveland when the former presidential candidate pointedly refused to endorse the party’s nominee, Donald Trump.
Cox insisted the Trump family, including Trump himself who made a brief appearance during the speech as the New York-led delegation jeered Cruz, was disappointed, but not mad.
“They were more disappointed than angry,” Cox said. “It wasn’t anything worth getting angry about.”
New York delegates on Thursday morning filing into their final breakfast meeting of the convention here in Cleveland described the Cruz remarks in a number of ways, none of them good. “Selfish” was the most frequently used term.
“It was a huge blunder on his part,” Cox said, adding the senator’s hopes of winning the presidency are officially dashed.
Cox compared the moment at the convention to the 1964 address by New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller, who blasted right-wing Republicans in San Francisco as they nominated Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater.
The moment was a watershed for the Republican Party, signaling the waning influence of moderate Republicans in the northeast.
“It was political suicide on Rockefeller’s part,” Cox said, noting his father-in-law, Richard Nixon, campaigned for Goldwater that year despite being in the political wilderness.
Jul 20th - 4:58 pm
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani will address the New York Republican delegation breakfast on Thursday, the final day of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
Giuliani is headlining the final delegation breakfast which is also set to conclude Senate Majority Leader John Flangan and Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb as well as Rep. Peter King.
Giuliani remains deeply popular among New York Republicans for his handling of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York City as well as efforts at managing the city in the 1990s that included an economic turnaround.
The former mayor, who ran for president in 2008, gave a fiery address at the convention on Monday and has garnered controversy in recent weeks for his remarks critical of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Jul 20th - 2:58 pm
If there’s a singularly common refrain from the New York delegation breakfast here at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, it is this: Donald Trump can (and will) turn the deep blue state a shade of red.
At the moment, the proposition seems highly unlikely.
Democrats outnumber Republicans 3-to-1 in New York. Republicans haven’t won a statewide race since 2002. Hillary Clinton holds a double-digit percentage point lead in every poll of the state.
But Republicans remains persistent their first home-state nominee for president since Thomas Dewey can flip the state — thus helping them all over New York in key races.
Consider the big applause former House Speaker Newt Gingrich received when he spoke at the delegation breakfast on Monday: ““If we carry New York by the margin we should, we will have changed American history.”
Rep. Chris Collins chimed in, too: “New York is in play.”
Adele Malpass, the chairwoman of the Manhattan Republican Committee is holding media availabilities on the topic.
“Among other topics, she will discuss is the July 19th, Quinnipiac poll that shows a 12 point spread between Clinton and Trump in New York State,” according to an advisory.
Monroe County Chairman Bill Reilich offered a measured take, saying it could force Clinton to spend money in New York.
“It’s certainly a big boost. We believe New York will be in play,” said Monroe County Chairman Bill Reilich. “Donald Trump is a very popular individual, very moving. he reaches out to the middle class, he reaches out to many people. I think that puts New York in play. At the very least, it forces the opposition to spend some money here.”
Jul 20th - 1:45 pm
Will the next Republican chairman in New York come from upstate?
That is the hope of Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino, who told reporters on Wednesday in Cleveland he would like he next committee chairman to hail from closer to his neck of the woods.
“Generally, Republicans are from Long Island and upstate New York,” Paladino said. “But we have a leader from Manhattan. I think eventually we’re going to see changes with the leadership, getting some leadership in the party from people who are more familiar with the values of upstate New York.”
Paladino insisted, however, that shouldn’t be him, though he has taken on an increasingly visible role in the state party apparatus after his run for governor in 2010 as the Republican nominee.
“I’m not a party leader,” he said.
Paladino made no mention of pushing for the ouster of Republican Chairman Ed Cox, but noted “at some point, Ed will move on and do other things.”
That will give upstate Republicans a chance to install one of their own.
An argument for a downstate chair of the party, however, is a big one for the GOP committee: Fundraising. An upstate chairman would likely have to have a network of donors they can point to who would help New York Republicans.
Onondaga County Chairman Tom Dadey earlier this year initially indicated he would run against Cox for the chairmanship, but dropped the bid before any voting took place.
“Our leadership has been questioned and I think there’s going to be a lot of changes in the state of New York,” he said.