Andrew Cuomo

Advocacy Group Wants Emergency Guidelines For Yeshivas

From the Morning Memo:

A group that has pushed for improved educations standards and curricula at yeshivas has sent a letter to state education officials urging them to adopt emergency regulations after a state judge this month tossed out revised oversight guidelines.

The letter from the group Yaffed this week called for the emergency regulations, backing up their concerns with affidavits of former yeshiva students who call for the need of a strengthened secular education.

“The decades long, systematic neglect of yeshiva students is an absolute emergency that the state must take as seriously as the measles crisis,” said Naftuli Moster, Yaffed’s executive director.

“Thousands of students graduate from schools in New York every year without the ability to read or write in English, perform basic math, or understand the science behind vaccines. It’s time to prioritize our children’s wellbeing ahead of political interests and finally stand up for their rights under the law.”

A state Supreme Court in Albany struck down revised guidelines meant to ensure Jewish day schools provide the standard equivalent of a secular education as part of a lawsuit by the New York State Association of Independent Schools, which had sought to halt the enforcement.

Ultimately, the court ruled on procedural grounds.

Yaffed, an advocacy group that has sought to strengthen secular education standards at yeshivas, potentially has some backing from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

“My attorneys are now talking with NYSED, reviewing the court’s decision because it is vitally important that the law we passed be followed which is that the yeshivas are held to the substantial equivalency standard,” Cuomo said in a radio interview earlier this month. “But we have to make sure SED (State Education Department) can do its job.”

Cuomo Plans Second Yankee Game Fundraiser

cuomoyankeefundraiserGov. Andrew Cuomo’s re-election campaign next Wednesday will host donors at a Yankees game in the Bronx against the Baltimore Orioles, according to an invitation obtained by Capital Tonight.

Cuomo’s campaign is charging $10,000 for the game.

This is the campaign’s second trip to the stadium in the Bronx. The campaign, recently re-named Cuomo For New York, scheduled a fundraiser for last night’s game between the Yankees and the Seattle Mariners. The Yankees lost 10-1.

Cuomo, a Queens native, is a fan of the Yankees’ cross-town rival Mets, and traveled to Kansas City in 2015 to watch the team’s first World Series game since 2000.

The Democratic governor was re-elected to a third term last year.

Cuomo Changes Campaign Committee Name

andrewcuomoGov. Andrew Cuomo’s campaign committee has branded in an indication that he may be seeking a fourth term.

The governor’s re-election campaign is now called “Andrew Cuomo For New York” according to an updated filing on the state Board of Elections website.

Cuomo’s campaign had previously been called Cuomo 2018 to reflect his successful bid for a third term last year, defeating Republican Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro.

Cuomo has already hinted that he’s running again in 2022. He has already held fundraisers this year and plans several more for the spring, both for low-dollar and large-dollar donors.

Cuomo Cheers House Passage Of Climate Change Bill

Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a statement on Thursday hailed the passage of a bill by the Democratic-controlled House of Representatives meant to address climate change and reduce climate emissions.

Cuomo also pointed to his version of the Green New Deal. Cuomo wants to have the state reduce carbon emissions by 40 percent by the year 2030 and 80 percent by 2050.

“As the Trump Administration continues to abdicate its responsibility to combat climate change, New York’s commitment to the Paris Agreement is stronger than ever,” Cuomo said. “We have launched a Green New Deal for New York that has not only set the ambitious goal of putting our state on the path to economy-wide carbon neutrality, but we are also taking the actions necessary to make it a reality.”

Environmental organizations are also urging state lawmakers and the governor to approve bills meant to address climate change before the legislative session ends on June 19.

Cuomo in his statement noted New York is already in an emissions reduction pact with California and Washington state.

“Over the last two years, our bipartisan coalition has grown to 24 governors, representing 55 percent of the U.S. population and over 60 percent of the U.S. economy,” he said. “We are demonstrating that real progress on climate is possible. Alliance states are proving time and again that climate leadership and economic growth go hand-in-hand.”

“President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell must stop ignoring the science and reality of climate change by making the Climate Action Now Act law. If we are to reach our national contribution to the global fight against climate change, we need them to join us in advancing aggressive steps in order to protect our citizens, our environment and our planet.”

Woo-Hoo! The Simpsons Send Cuomo Season 4

Homer-gate has legs.

Al Jean, the executive producer of The Simpsons, is sending Gov. Andrew Cuomo a care package: Season 4 of the long-running series on DVD.

The gift is coming to Cuomo after the governor, responding to a question about the show’s Sunday night roast of upstate New York, said he does not watch the show.

“It has come to our attention that you have never seen an episode of The Simpsons. Please accept with our best wishes this Season 4 DVD,” Jean wrote in a letter accompanying the box set. “You might find its ideas on monorail transportation, dental plans and local theater intriguing. Or you might just enjoy an episode when the demands of Albany prove too unyielding.”

Jean also invited the governor to a table read of the show in Los Angeles.

The Simpsons mocked the decline of upstate New York in its latest episode with a Frank Sinatra-like song, which in turn led to lobbed insults between the governor’s office and Republicans.

The fourth season of the show is generally considered by fans and critics to be one of its best.

“Nice Hank Scorpio move,” Cuomo senior advisor Rich Azzopardi tweeted in response. “Check the relevant @imdb page for a review in the near future.”

As for the table read invite Azzopardi said, “I’ll have to check, but maybe if they moved it to Rochester or Syracuse. Upstate isn’t Shelbyville, there’s nothing to fear.”

Cuomo Revels In NRA Fight

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday made four separate media appearances over the airwaves amid the leadership turmoil that has engulfed the National Rifle Association.

Cuomo appears to be enjoying the blame that the NRA has cast on New York officials — both the separately elected Attorney General Letitia James for her investigation into the gun-rights group’s finances as well as the lawsuit the governor is backing over firearm insurance the organization wants to carry in New York.

“Oh, I think they’re in trouble,” Cuomo said in an interview on CNN in the morning.

“I think the gig is up for the NRA because people now know the truth. I mean, you have, 2017, we had the highest year for mass shootings in the history of the nation. Almost every week. Last weekend the awful synagogue shooting in San Diego. And what this President has done, he’s walked around the house, pouring gasoline on the floor, and then says, well, every American should have a match. No. That’s the toxic cocktail, this environment of hate in the nation. Yes, intolerance, division, anti-Semitism, racism, plus a gun, plus a gun.”

Cuomo made similar remarks on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show, MSNBC and WCBS 880 radio.

The Democratic governor has made gun control a signature issue for him since taking office in 2011, approving a package of guns in 2013 known as the SAFE Act, and this year backing legislation that is meant to limit those deemed to be too dangerous from possessing a gun.

But Cuomo’s NRA opposition has also earned him ire from Republicans, including Sen. Robert Ortt, who criticized the governor’s approach on the issue.

Ortt in a statement called the efforts by Cuomo and James against the NRA politically motivated.

“I am a proud member of the NRA, as are millions of freedom-loving Americans,” he said. “The Attorney General joins the Governor and other radical New York City extremists in pushing our political climate to dangerous new depths. Their message is clear: it is not enough to oppose gun owners, conservatives, and others with whom they disagree, they will wage legal, taxpayer-funded campaigns to eradicate those individuals and organizations from existence.”

In Measles Fight, Cuomo Says Public Health Supersedes Religious Concerns

With more than 700 cases of measles now reported in the United States, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday in a radio interview said public health concerns should trump religious exemptions.

“As governor of New York, I’m also concerned about the public health,” Cuomo said on WNYC’s The Briand Lehrer Show. “You cannot endanger your child’s health or my child’s health.”

The measles outbreak in New York has largely been confined to Orthodox Jewish communities in Rockland County and Brooklyn.

State lawmakers have called for an end to religious exemptions for vaccinations amid the outbreak. Cuomo on Tuesday reiterated that he understands the religious concerns connected to the issue, but said it should be set aside given the measles outbreak.

Cuomo also backed efforts by public health officials in Rockland County and New York City to limit public exposure by people who have have tested positive.

“I respect the religious exemption, but I don’t think it applies in this situation,” Cuomo said. “You have a public health crisis.”

Cuomo Says He’ll Be Helpful For Biden’s Presidential Bid

Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a radio interview on Tuesday said he would be helpful in anyway he can to support former Vice President Joe Biden’s bid for the Democratic nomination in the presidential campaign.

Cuomo was responding to a report by CNBC last week that he would open access to his fundraising apparatus and donors for Biden’s campaign.

“Will I be helpful to Joe Biden in any way I can? Yes,” Cuomo told WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show.

Cuomo sidestepped when pressed about criticism of Biden’s handling of the sexual harassment allegations raised by Anita Hill during Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’s confirmation hearing in 1991. At the time, Biden was the top Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Biden called Hill before launching his third presidential campaign; Hill said Biden stopped short of apologizing for his handling of the hearing.

“I think that’s up to Joe Biden to handle,” Cuomo said when if Biden should apologize more directly to Hill. “I wasn’t there.”

Lehrer responded, “That’s it?”

Cuomo said, “That’s it. I wasn’t there.”

“I think people are free to take into consideration anything that they want,” Cuomo said. “He has a long record. They can consider that. They can consider anything that he has done throughout his life. That is true with all candidates.”

Cuomo: Marijuana Legalization ‘A Large Undertaking’

Gov. Andrew Cuomo during a question-and-answer session with reporters in Sodus Point on Monday said a priority in the legalization of marijuana is to ensure it does not get into the hands of underage consumers.

“Conceptually many people marijuana should be legalized under the right circumstances and under the right circumstances is what’s important here,” Cuomo said. “The devil is in the details.”

Lawmakers have returned to the Capitol following a two-week break and no agreement yet on a legalization plan, which fell out of the state budget negotiations in March.

Cuomo earlier this year proposed a regulatory plan that would treat marijuana like the state regulates alcohol products. State lawmakers in favor legalization want the revenue to be earmarked for communities impacted by drug laws.

One version of the legislative bill would allow people to grow and maintain small amounts of marijuana, a measure Cuomo did not include in his proposal. But others, including Democrats from suburban and upstate districts have raised concerns with traffic safety as a result of legalization.

“That is a large undertaking and that’s what the Legislature is going to be talking about over these next couple of months,” Cuomo said.

“I believe it should be done if it can be done correctly.”

‘The Simpsons’ Mocking Of Upstate New York Becomes Political Fodder

Don’t have a cow, man.

A song mocking population decline, the Buffalo Bills and even the winter in upstate New York turned into a perfectly cromulent dispute between New York Republicans and Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

The bit, featuring Homer Simpson singing a Frank Sinatra-like song with unflattering images of upstate New York — think a population count in Utica ticking backwards — was highlighted by state GOp Chairman Ed Cox.

“The Simpsons may be a comedy, but the failures under Andrew Cuomo are no laughing matter,” Cox said.

“There are very real life consequences to his bad policies that have caused people to lose hope in their government and leave for better opportunities elsewhere. New York went from being the Empire State to the butt of jokes. It doesn’t have to be this way–it’s time for all New Yorkers to wake up and fight for a better future. We can thrive again under a Republican governor and legislature.”

Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi fired back in a statement littered with Simpsons references.

“Ed ‘Mr. Burns’ Cox is clearly trying to block the sun in a feeble attempt to distract from the civil war in his own backyard. While there is more work to do, the facts are the facts and jobs are up, unemployment is down and millennials are starting to move back. Good luck with your race Ed,” he said.

“I’m rooting for you, but since your party hasn’t won an important race since Disco Stu was in style, I’m not holding out hope.”

You can watch the song here.