Jul 16th - 1:42 pm
A reader who is in the Cuomo universe forwarded me the following e-mail that was sent to Capital Region supporters of the Democratic gubernatorial designee, who will be traveling through the area this weekend on his 11-day upstate tour.
Cuomo started in the Hudson Valley yesterday and has no public events today. His campaign has been acting on a need-to-know basis with reporters, releasing information on the AG’s whereabouts on the morning of his scheduled appearances. Thankfully, volunteers are getting more details.
Jul 16th - 1:15 pm
On the heels of Gov. David Paterson’s signing this morning of a bill that bans the NYPD from maintaining information gleaned from stop-and-frisks that turn up no illegal activity, Assemblyman Richard Brodsky is accusing his AG rival, Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice, to cease similar efforts employed by her office.
Brodsky says Rice runs “electronic” stop-and-frisk programs that he described as follows:
“(I)nnocent drivers passing through certain neighborhoods had pictures taken of the cars, which were then processed through a License Plate recognition System (LPRS). LPRS will reveal the name and address of the cars owner.”
“After sorting the photo date DA Rice had a letter sent to all car owners who did not live in the immediate vicinity indicating the ‘the police department’s knowledge of their automobile’s presence in the area.’, according to Rice.”
“The cars were not engaged in any other activity other than lawfully driving on public streets, and were not engaged in or suspected of any criminal or inappropriate activity. It is believed that the police records are still in existence.”
Jul 16th - 12:43 pm
No wonder his numbers are so eye-poppingly huge.
Combing through AG Andrew Cuomo’s July 15 campaign finance filing, it’s impossible not to notice how many fundraisers he has working for him.
I count nine different firms/people listed under the category “fundr” in the Democratic gubernatorial designee’s filing.
Topping the list is Berger Strategies Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based firm that Cuomo paid $111,000 since January and appears to have on retainer for $19,500 a month.
Next up is JB Consulting, which Cuomo paid $87,500. He also has Cathy Blaney & Associates, which has been bumped up from $5,000 to $8,000 a month.
Cindy Darrison’s firm was getting $10,000 a month, but she is no longer working for the Cuomo camapign as of April.
The bulk of Cuomo’s fundraising expenditures went to pay for the locations where events were held. The biggest: The Sheraton ($169,557), which was the site of his big birthday bash at which Jon Bon Jovi was the the big draw.
(The event was held in December 2009, but the bill didn’t get paid until the very beginning of this filing period, apparently).
Jul 16th - 12:11 pm
Gov. David Paterson spent $2.54 million over the past six months, much of which went to cover the cost of his high-priced attorney and hire the same PR firm retained by his predecessor, ex-Gov. Eliot Spitzer, in the wake of the prostitution scandal that forced him to resign.
Paterson sent $700,000 worth of his campaign cash to the firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, home to Theodore Wells Jr., who has been representing the governor in the twin ethics probes AG Andrew Cuomo handed over to former Chief Judge Judith Kaye.
The governor also spent $166,720 on Sard Verbinnen & Co., the crisis PR firm Spitzer hired to handle the media maelstrom that followed his admission that he had patronized high-priced call girls and resignation from office in March 2008 – a move that elevated Paterson to his current post.
Paterson raised $100,123 over the past six months, but has taken in nothing since the end February, when he announced that he would not be running this fall.
NYPIRG’s Bill Mahoney reminds us that in the days leading up to his announcement that he would take a pass on the race, Paterson claimed to have raised $1.5 million in a single month.
That decision came in the wake of news reports that he had allegedly interfered in the domestic violence case of his suspended aide, David Johnson, and a Public Integrity Commission report that found he had lied while obtaining Yankees World Series ticket.
Paterson started the six-month period with $3 million on hand, he ended it with $615,967 in the bank. He returned $637,900 worth of campaign contributions.
That’s slightly more than the $620,000 I reported back on Feb. 1 that he had available to spend on a primary battle against Cuomo, who then had $16.1 million on hand – about $12 million of which was primary cash.
Jul 16th - 11:36 am
GOP gubernatorial designee Rick Lazio’s spending outpaced his fundraising over the past six months, and he loaned $200,000 to his campaign to help keep it afloat.
Lazio’s July 15 campaign finance report, which just appeared on-line at the state Board of Elections Website, reveals the former Long Island congressman started the six-month period with a balance of $637,356 and raised $1,464,164.
He spent $1,615,936 since mid-January and has just $688,821 on hand – a mere fraction of the $23.6 million the Democratic gubernatorial designee, AG Andrew Cuomo, has in the bank.
Lazio campaign spokesman Barney Keller said the campaign has raised a total of $3 million since the election cycle started, 90 percent of which came over the past six weeks – in other words, since the convention at which Lazio succesfully blocked Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy from getting on the GOP ballot and clinched the party’s nod.
However, since Carl Paladino filed some 28,000 signatures yesterday, it appears a near certainty that Lazio will have to fight the Buffalo businessman for the GOP line in a September primary.
Paladino has already spent $1.6 million of his own cash on his campaign and insists he’s still willing to drop up to $10 million on the race. He also plans to be on the November general election ballot via an independent “Taxpayers” line he will create through a second petition drive.
UPDATED: Lazio’s burn rate is so enormous largely because of the amount he’s dropping on consultants and staff. He’s paying his campaign manager Kevin Fullington about $20,500 a month, and he dropped more than $228,000 into Arthur Finkelstein’s bank account.
Jul 16th - 10:28 am
Two can play at that game.
State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s campaign has dubbed his GOP/Conservative opponent Harry Wilson “hedge fund Harry” in an effort to denigrate his Wall Street experience, which Wilson is trying to cast as a positive attribute – particularly when it comes to managing the state pension fund.
In response, Wilson’s campaign has come up with a nickname of its own for the comptroller: “Albany Tom.”
This is a continuation of an anti-Albany theme that a number of statewide candidates – including Democratic gubernatorial designee Andrew Cuomo, who is no fan of DiNapoli’s – have adopted at a time when New Yorkers’ disgust with the status quo at the Capitol has reached an all-time high.
In a press release that went out this morning, Wilson called DiNapoli a “23-year creature of Albany (who) believes leadership is about issuing press releases, rather than taking action, and clearly doesn’t want to rock the boat.”
Jul 16th - 10:11 am
AG Andrew Cuomo isn’t the only one taking to the road in an RV this summer.
Two groups that opposes same-sex marriage, the New Yorker’s Family Research Foundation and the National Organization for Marriage, are playing host this Saturday to the “Summer for Marriage RV Tour,” which will be making a stop at the West Capitol Park in Albany.
This particular tour is a nationwide effort featuring the “One Man, One Woman” bus. It plans to hit 23 cities and rally support for “traditional marriage.”
NYFRF President, the Rev. Jason J. McGuire, released a statement that has some fun at Cuomo’s expense and also references a recent Times story that questioned the AG’s committment to LGBT issues – including same-sex marriage, which he recently said would be a priority for his first year in office if he’s elected governor.
“Maybe there was something to that recent New York Times story after all,” McGuire said.
“How else can Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo explain where he got the idea for an RV tour coming to Albany? Maybe Andrew Cuomo is still ‘in the closet’ about his support for marriage between a man and a woman. Perhaps while perusing New Yorker’s Family Research Foundation’s website one evening, the thought struck him, ‘Hey, an RV tour, I like that!’”
“If the Attorney General is reading this, please feel free to stop by (we promise not to blow your cover),” McGuire concluded.
Jul 16th - 8:58 am
Congressional hopeful Chris Cox raised less than $200,000 over the last three months and has $840,000 on hand as the NY-1 GOP primary is heating up.
If Cox hadn’t loaned his own campaign another $500,000, bringing his total self-financing to $1 million to date, he would have a mere $340,000 on hand. Maggie Haberman has details of Cox’s burn rate, which is considerable. Much of his spending went to cover high-priced consultants connected to Sen. John McCain, who left en masse in recent weeks.
The campaign issued a press release shortly after 10:30 p.m. last night trumpeting that Cox has filed “a total of $1,438,446 in the election cycle to date,” but only $438,446 of that represents actual contributions from people other than the candidate himself, and there’s a lot of family money in there – both from Cox’s own relatives and from his fiancee, Andrea Catsimatidis, and her father, John.
Cox insisted his campaign will “definitely have the resources to wage a winning fight for both the Republican and Conservative ballot lines,” adding:
“Victory in this race has never been about matching, dollar-for-dollar, the special interest money received by the liberal incumbent.”
Jul 16th - 8:30 am
The much-anticipated fundraising numbers for the state GOP are out, and they are not good news for embattled party Chairman Ed Cox.
Cox, who won a battle for the state chairmanship against then-Niagara County GOP Chairman Henry Wojtaszek in large part due to his claim of fundraising prowess, has only managed to bring in a combined total of about $1.5 million to the party’s three committees over the last six months and has a mere $657,814 on hand. (This is updated to reflect the six-month tally of federal fundraising).
Party insiders say that’s enough to keep operations running (payroll, general bills etc.) through the end of the summer, and that doesn’t leave much – if anything – left over for the elections in what is supposed to be a great year for Republicans.
In a statement, Cox tried to put a positive spin on the numbers, saying some of the party’s fundraising efforts have directly benefitted candidates, which isn’t showing up in this report.
“The financial support we received and continue to amass is critical to our State Republican Party’s success as an organization for the benefit of our candidates and all New Yorkers,” the chairman said.
“In addition to the fundraising dollars detailed in the periodic filings, the State Party has also been active in raising additional funds directly for our Republican candidates and committees.”
Jul 16th - 8:04 am
Posted by Liz Benjamin in [...]
Gov. David Paterson will sign a bill blocking the NYPD from keeping stop-and-frisk information about people who are released without legal action.
“Albany has robbed us of a great crime-fighting tool, one that saved lives,” said NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly.
Without the database, Kelly warned, “there will be, inevitably, killers and other criminals who won’t be captuerd as quickly or perhaps ever.”
AG Andrew Cuomo has raised $27.3 million over the past three-and-a-half years.
“He’s now got all the money right now to run whatever type of campaign he wants,” an impressed veteran GOP political consultant Ed Rollins said of Cuomo’s haul.
No matter what he reports on hand today, Rick Lazio is all but certain to be far behind Cuomo in the money race.
“(P)olitics can be a fun family experience,” said Cuomo, who is being joined by his three daughters as he tours upstate in an RV.
Cuomo will be back in the Hudson Valley on Monday.
New York Democrats are having a very lucrative fundraising year.
Donald Trump contributed $25,000 to Nassau County DA Kathleen Rice’s AG campaign.
Rice is leading the AG candidates’ fundraising race.