Ed Cox

Cox: Cuomo’s ‘Lost His Will’ In Teachers Union Fight

CoxAs the state prepares to overhaul the Common Core education standards and potentially reduce the impact of state testing on teacher evaluations to zero, New York Republican Chairman Ed Cox knocked Gov. Andrew Cuomo for an apparent retreat on education policy.

Cuomo has battled with the state’s teachers unions, especially the New York State United Teachers umbrella group, since taking office.

The union has pushed back against Cuomo’s push to link teacher evaluation scores to standardized test results and has been critical of the governor’s support for charter schools.

But now Cuomo’s task force convened to recommend changes to Common Core testing may back a uncoupling of test results from evaluations — a twist in policy that comes after state lawmakers and the governor agreed to a revamp in teacher evaluations earlier this year.

At the same time, roughly 20 percent of students opted out of the April round of state tests in math and English-language arts.

“The union didn’t break him, he lost his will to take them on after an embarrassing Democratic primary where he was forced to rely on Mayor de Blasio to get the Working Families Party nomination,” Cox said in a statement. “Cuomo is now taking every opportunity to lurch to his left to gain favor with the Working Families Party and outflank de Blasio. New York students are once again the victims.”

Support for Common Core and stricter teacher evaluation standards that focuses on test results isn’t necessarily a partisan issue: Liberals have blasted Cuomo’s education stances as have conservatives who support more local control over education policy.

In his statement, Cox said Cuomo was choosing a political expedient route.

“It’s clear the Governor’s only priority right now is protecting his political ambitions, rather what is good for the state. Too many of our students are stuck in failing schools and Upstate’s economy is on the brink of disaster, both the result of failed liberal policies. The radical reform the Governor promised has vanished in his political winds.”

Cox: Pension Veto ‘Difficult’ To Override

CoxAs some, mostly Republican, state lawmakers talk of overriding Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s veto of a bill design to expand a pension credit to veterans, state GOP Committee Chairman Ed Cox said on Wedndesday it was unlikely.

“Veterans deserve to have a break,” Cox told reporters in Buffalo. “At the moment the Legislature is not in session in Albany. I think it will be difficult to override. The governor has made his decision and I think voters in 2018 will make their decision about the governor.”

Cuomo on Monday night announced 22 measures were vetoed, while he approved 39.

The veterans bill has been vetoed by Cuomo before and he once again cited the increase cost it would bring to taxpayers. More >

State Republicans Knock de Blasio’s Iowa Forum

The New York Republican Committee on Wednesday took a shot at Mayor Bill de Blasio’s planned forum in Iowa for the presidential candidates to discuss inequality.

In a statement, Republican Chairman Ed Cox said the trip to Iowa is a sign the mayor is “bored with his job already.”

“While he tends to his presidential ambitions, quality of life in the city is declining, crime is increasing and the public school system is an embarrassment,” Cox said in the statement. “Why are we not surprised that he would rather do a public forum in Iowa than New York City?”

De Blasio has sought to inject into the national debate a discussion about the growing income inequality chasm in the country, holding off on making an early endorsement in the presidential campaign in the process.

Democratic candidates including former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former Gov. Martin O’Malley and Sen. Bernie Sanders are invited to the event.

Cox: Boehner’s Decision Not Trivial

EdcoxThe decision for House Speaker John Boehner to step down was likely not a trivial one, State Republican Committee Chairman Ed Cox said in a radio interview on Friday.

Cox, interviewed on Fred Dicker’s Talk-1300 radio show minutes after the news broke Boehner would resign both from the speakership and his House seat by the end of October, called Boehner a “good guy” who is stepping down for the good of the country.

“Look, this is a good guy. He just wanted to do what was right for the country and I think he just thought what was right for the country was for himself to resign as speaker,” Cox said. “I have no doubt this was a trivial decision on his part. This was a well considered, this is what’s best for the country.”

Boehner has made multiple appearances on behalf of New York House candidates and Republican incumbents since taking the speakership in 2011 — campaigning and fundraising heavily in New York’s upstate battleground congressional districts.

But he faced in recent months a revolt from conservative rank-and-file members who once again sought to curtail federal funding of Planned Parenthood, a move that risked yet another government shutdown, which Boehner wanted to avoid. More >

Cox Re-Elected State GOP Chairman

As expected, Ed Cox was re-elected on Monday to another term as state Republican committee chairman.

The victory comes after Onondaga County Republican Chairman Tom Dadey contemplated jumping into the race against Cox, but never gained the needed support from county leaders to unseat Cox.

Dadey had been critical of Cox’s leadership last week, saying he would be able to bridge the gap between tea party-backed Republicans upstate and downstate GOP members.

At the same time, Dadey was openly suggesting a candidacy after the Senate majority leader post fell to another downstate Republican, John Flanagan of Suffolk County, who replaced Dean Skelos of Nassau.

But Dadey never gained the support from fellow county chairs amide questions over his ability to raise enough money for a party that is vastly outnumber enrollment-wise in New York.

Now Cox faces a presidential election year in which Republicans are defending their last lever of power in state government, the state Senate.

Cox ‘Aboslutely’ Expects To Be Re-Elected Chairman

EdcoxState GOP Chairman Ed Cox told reporters on Friday he “absolutely” will be re-elected to another despite a potential challenge from Onondaga County Chairman Tom Dadey.

“I don’t know if there’s been a declaration or not,” Cox said after attending the state Business Council meeting on Friday. “Normally if you do a challenge you declare it several months in advance.”

Cox is due to seek re-election on Monday, when Republicans meet in the Albany area. He laughed off whether he was counting votes among party leaders.

“Count the votes? Oh, c’mon,” he said.

Cox, the son-in-law of the late Richard Nixon, has been accused by Republicans like 2010 gubernatorial nominee Carl Paladino of not pushing back against Democrats like Andrew Cuomo. More >

Cox Mocks ‘Two Scorpions’ Cuomo And de Blasio

EdcoxNew York Republican Committee Chairman Ed Cox in a statement on Tuesday took to mocking the squabble between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio over the push to curtail topless performers in Times Square.

While the governor and mayor “are competing to show who’s tougher on bare-breasted beauties in Times Square” the city faces more pressing problems like crime (NYPD statistics released this week show serious crime is dropping in New York City).

In the statement, Cox compares the Cuomo and de Blasio spat to “two scorpions” fighting in a bottle, only New Yorkers are the ones being hurt.

“Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo and Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio are like two scorpions in a bottle, and it’s New Yorkers, ultimately, who are getting stung,” Cox said in the statement. “While New York City reverts to the pre-Giuliani era of crime and grime, and the state remains the highest taxed and least job-friendly state in America, Cuomo and de Blasio are competing to show who’s tougher on bare-breasted beauties in Times Square. Cuomo is sending in State troopers while de Blasio appoints a blue ribbon panel to try lay the political groundwork to embarrass a Bloomberg initiative. Is there any wonder why so many families and businesses are fleeing New York?”

More >

Cox: Schumer Should Block Iran Deal

EdcoxStated opposition by Sen. Chuck Schumer to the Iran nuclear agreement doesn’t go far enough, New York Republican Chairman Ed Cox said on Friday in a statement.

Schumer, who announced on Thursday night he would vote against the agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear arms reached last month, should actively seek to block the agreement, Cox said.

“After weeks of pondering, Senator Schumer announced opposition to the Iran deal. Good for him, but it’s not enough,” Cox said in the statement. More >

NYS GOP To Clinton: What About Those 200,000 NY Jobs?

Earlier today, Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton delivered a speech in New York City calling for a “growth and fairness” economy, saying the growing income inequality gap is dragging the country down.

In response to Clinton’s appearance, state GOP Chairman Ed Cox issued a statement accusing the candidate of making “empty promises,” dredging up a campaign promise she made all the way back in 2000, when she first ran to be the junior US senator from New York.

“(U)pstate New York is still waiting on the 200,000 jobs that Hillary Clinton promised to create when she ran for Senate,” Cox said. “It’s not a coincidence that the states with the best job growth numbers are run by Republican Governors instituting tax reform and pro-growth policies at the local level.”

This is a well loved old chestnut for the New York Republicans, and it was also seized upon by then Sen. Barack Obama’s campaign during the 2008 Democratic presidential primary.

While it’s true that Clinton never did deliver on her 200,000 jobs promise, that has never hampered her ability (or not yet, anyway) to win votes in New York.

Cox: Bharara Trying Cases In Press

New York Republican Chairman Ed Cox on Wednesday in a radio interview criticized U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara’s office for leaking the details of an investigation of the state’s highest-ranking GOP elected official.

Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos is under investigation by Bharara’s office, reportedly over his son’s employment at an Arizona-based firm that received a contract for a sewer project in Nassau County.

There’s no indication that Bharara’s office released the details of the probe to The New York Times, which first reported the news of the inquiry.

Skelos has subsequently confirmed he’s cooperating with Bharara’s office and at least three Senate Republicans have confirmed they’ve received subpoenas in the case.

Cox, who in the past has spoken approvingly of Bharara’s investigations of Democratic officials like Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, knocked what he said were leaks.

“It looks like it’s be tried in the press by leaks from Preet Bharara,” Cox said in a radio interview with Fred Dicker on Talk-1300. “Look, Bharara has been criticized and I’ve heard it privately from district court judges, by the way he tries cases in the press.”

Bharara most recently was criticized by a federal judge in the case he’s trying against former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a Democrat.

The judge in a ruling dismissing Silver’s effort to have the case tossed was critical of Bharara’s public statements following Silver’s arrest as well as his comments knocking state government’s operations.

It’s unclear what impact the Skelos investigation will have on the chamber and for now his colleagues remain supportive of his staying in the leadership post.

“Whether there will be an indictment or not I don’t know,” Cox said. “But I don’t think it should be tried by leaks by the U.S. attorney.”