Sep 27th - 5:04 pm
…compliments of the state Democratic Party, which deems this must-see TV.
Joy Behar quipped that is all of Paladino’s “illegitimate children” vote for him, then he might actually win in November.
Sep 27th - 4:42 pm
Sarah Palin has weighed in from afar via Twitter with an atta-boy for Rick Lazio for bowing out of the New York governor’s race.
“Rick Lazio: u r Commonsense Conservatives (& other freedom-loving NY’rs) hero today. Thanks 4 selfless act 2 allow your great state 2 thrive”
No word yet on whether she will formally endorse Carl Paladino, although she’s sort of doing that by default by praising Lazio for getting off Row D, theoretically clearing the way for the Buffalo businessman (assuming the Conservative Party leaders agree to follow the lead of their chairman, Mike Long, on Wednesday).
Sep 27th - 4:27 pm
Gov. David Paterson today said gubernatorial hopeful Andrew Cuomo has “work” to win the hearts of black voters – a key segment of the Democratic base that appears to be suffering from a crisis of confidence in the AG following his shift to the center to woo Republicans and independents.
Paterson, who once was on course to face Cuomo in a potentially racially divisive primary, expressed confidence that Cuomo will manage to win back disaffected black voters, noting that he moved quickly to address a problem that was first aired (at least in a mainstream way) by The Amsterdam News’ Elinor Tatum in an open letter/editorial last week.
“African-American voters are consumers just like everyone else,” Paterson said. “You’re going to have to work for that vote as you would anyplace else.”
“I think the attorney general, now that a couple weeks have gone by since the primary, has really kicked his campaign into high gear. So, I don’t think the African-American community isn’t having any concern that anyone else is having.”
“They want to hear from him and he knows that and he’s doing that so the speed in which he responded also shows what his commitment is.”
Paterson was in Rochester today with Cuomo’s running mate, Mayor Bob Duffy, and also spoke about layoffs. Last week his administration said some 2,000 people will be let go prior to the end of his tenure on Dec. 31.
Sep 27th - 4:04 pm
If fundraising is indicative of success at the voting booth in the upcoming November elections, then the Senate Republicans are poised to do quite well indeed.
For the second filing in a row, the Republican minority has out-raised the Democratic majority, according to the 10-day post-primary filing that has (finally) appeared on the state Board of Elections Website.
Between the 11-day pre-primary filing and this latest report, the Senate Republicans raised almost five times as much as their opponents on the other side of the aisle and are matched almost dollar for dollar with the Democrats for the final sprint to the epic battle for control of the chamber heading into the all-important next round of redistricting.
I wouldn’t be at all surprised, however, to see the DCCC get involved here after today’s report that New York is now poised to lose two House seats when the lines are re-drawn, rather than just one as was previously expected.
The numbers are as follows:
The Republicans started this latest period with $2.075 million on hand, raised $287,210, spent $327,555 and now have $2.03 million on hand in their general campaign committee. They’ve also got $348,070 on on hand in their housekeeping account (as of mid-July).
The Democrats started out well, with $2.50 million on hand, but raised a paltry $61,250 and spent a whopping $553,992. They’ve now got $2.01 million on hand in their general campaign committee and $698,615 in the housekeeping account.
UPDATE: A Senate Democrat points out – and rightly so – that $107,750 worth of the GOP’s cash came in the form of transfers from Senate Minority Leader Dean Skelos ($100,000), Sen. John Bonacic ($6,500) and Sen. John DeFrancisco ($1,250).
UPDATE2: Austin Shafran sent a statement on behalf of the DSCC. It appears in full after the jump.
Sep 27th - 3:18 pm
Michael Grimm, who won the NY-13 GOP primary on Sept. 14, is poised to become the sixth Republican congressional challenger added to the top tier of the NRCC’s Young Guns list.
This qualifies Grimm for the highest level of support from the national committee, although doesn’t necessarily guarantee there will be ads purchased on his behalf. The NRCC has bought or reserved airtime in 47 districts so far this cycle, but that is expected to grow.
The NRCC is already on the air with ads in NY-20 on behalf of another Young Gun, Chris Gibson.
Other GOP candidates on the list include: Randy Altschuler (NY-1), Nan Hayworth (NY-19), Richard Hanna (NY-24), Tom Reed (NY-29).
Grimm defeated Michael Allegretti in the primary and is now seeking to oust Democratic Rep. Mike McMahon.
His candidacy has divided Republicans in Staten Island, but has also drawn considerable national attention with former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Sarah Palin and Sen. John McCain all weighing in on Grimm’s behalf prior to the primary election.
Sep 27th - 2:54 pm
With the official departure from the general election battlefield of Rick Lazio, the the governor’s race is now essentially a two-man slugfest between Carl Paladino and Andrew Cuomo.
If state Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long gets his way, Paladino will replace Lazio on Row D, which would re-establish the traditional alliance of the GOP and Conservative parties. Paladino would then have three lines: Row B, Row D and the Taxpayers Party line he established through an independent petition drive.
Cuomo has Row A, Row C (Independence Party) and Row E (Working Families Party).
Here’s the Cuomo campaign’s statement in response to Lazio’s announcement, which takes the fight right to Paladino, continuing to cast him as an “extremist”:
“Today’s decision by Rick Lazio and the Conservative Party means that the choice in this election is now more clear and more stark than ever.”
“The spotlight is now on the choice between the Tea Party extremism of Carl Paladino or Andrew Cuomo’s record of fighting corruption, standing up for a woman’s right to choose, and his detailed plans to create jobs for New Yorkers.”
State Democratic Party Chairman Jay Jacobs put out a more strongly-worded statement, befitting his attack-dog role as the Cuomo’s campaign’s chief surrogate.
Sep 27th - 2:41 pm
The Human Rights Campaign has released the third in its series of Web videos, this time featuring the widow of the late tennis great Arthur Ahse.
Jeanne Moutoussamy-Ashe says in the video that she and her husband, who broke the color barrier on the court, fought discrimination throughout their lives, adding: “I know he would support marriage equality.” She urges viewers to support candidates in the general election who would vote “yes” on marriage.
The first two videos released by the HRC starred Julianne Moore and designer Kenneth Cole (brother-in-law of Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo).
Others to follow will feature: Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, Mayor Michael Bloomberg, David Chang, Tom Colicchio, Fran Drescher, Whoopi Goldberg, Ethan and Ryan Hawke, Christopher Meloni, Moby, Joan Rivers, Daphne Ruben-Vega, Sunrise and Mark Ruffalo and the Rev. Al Sharpton.
Sep 27th - 2:27 pm
We caught up with state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli in Buffalo earlier today and asked him whether he’s put out about the fact that he’s now the odd man out when it comes to endorsements by Democratic gubernatorial candidate of his fellow statewide contenders.
Cuomo, as you’ll recall, endorsed Sen. Eric Schneiderman yesterday to run for the office he’s vacating to run for governor. He has rather pointedly not supported DiNapoli, using his ongoing pay-to-play pension fund investigation as cover.
DiNapoli is trying to shrug off his lack of support from Cuomo, saying today that he’s “looking forward to a great victory for all the Democrats,” adding: “The endorsement that matters to me the most is the endorsement of the voters on November 2nd.”
“I am running as a Democrat,” the comptroller said. “Obviously the Democratic ticket is headed by the attorney general. I am pulling for the whole team.”
“And I know that the Democrats working out there across the state are doing the same thing. I think it’s going to be a good year for our party and we are going to work hard to see that it is.”
Sep 27th - 2:11 pm
Here’s Rick Lazio’s press conference officially ending his gubernatorial bid, which was supposed to be his grand return to the public stage and ended up being the likely end of his political career.
He notably did not endorse the man who defeated him in the GOP primary, Carl Paladino, and also took his erstwhile Democratic target, Andrew Cuomo, to task, calling both candidates “flawed individuals, flawed in terms of public character, flawed in terms of ideas and principles that will restore growth and pride to our great state.”
“While my heart beckons me forward, my head tells me my continued presence on the Conservative line would simply lead to the election of Andrew Cuomo, and the continuation of an entrenched political machine,” Lazio said. “I do not want to be responsible for that, and that is unacceptable.”
Lazio said he believes governing “requires public character, an understanding of how government works and the true problems that we’re facing, and ultimately, really, the experience and the ability to make the changes that have been promised.”
He said he gets the “whole primal scream thing,” but doesn’t believe the anger that has bolstered Paladino’s candidacy will go away until the state’s economic prospects improve.
(NOTE: Sorry for the delay in getting this posted. As you’ve probably noticed, we’re having some technical difficulties).
Sep 27th - 1:03 pm
State Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long told me just now he’s had a “turnaround” on Carl Paladino and will “lead the party to endorse” the Buffalo businessman now that Rick Lazio has officially ended his gubernatorial run.
“I’m going to make it very clear that I believe that’s the road we should go , and I believe that’s the road we have to travel,” Long said.
“That’s a turnaround, yes. Carl and I have had some conversations…we’re willing to close the book on the past and move forward and fight together for the people of New York.”
Long said his party will hold another state convention on Wednesday – this was an already-scheduled post-primary reorganization meeting at which an entire new state committee (and I believe the chairman) will be reconstituted.
Long said Paladino will be nominated at the meeting, and he suspects there will be some leaders who won’t support him (recall that initially after the GOP primary, Conservative leaders had a conference call and expressed a desire to run one of their own on Row D if Lazio decided not to run).
But ultimately, he said, Paladino will likely get the line. He’s not an enrolled Conservative, remember, and so needs permission to run on the line in the form of a Wilson Pakula, which the committee needs to approve as well.