The first, from Jon Campbell:
In June, Gov. Andrew Cuomo negotiated and proposed a bill that claimed to "protect New York's standing as a national leader in teacher evaluation."
Six months later, Cuomo vetoed the very same bill, saying it doesn't "fix the foundational issues with the teacher evaluation system."
In his veto message, Cuomo promised to propose "comprehensive reforms" to the teacher evaluation system next year.
The second, from the LoHud editorial board:
Over the weekend between Christmas and New Year's, when little government work gets done, Govs. Andrew Cuomo of New York and Chris Christie of New Jersey pulled the plug on much-needed reforms at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. In the same breath, they touted their quest for "accountability" at the lapdog agency.
On Saturday night, the governors announced vetoes of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Transparency and Accountability Act of 2014, dual bills passed unanimously in both states' legislatures. The legislation promised more transparency and less political maneuvering at the Port Authority. The huge agency's responsibilities include international airports; the largest port in North America; key bridge, tunnel and rail crossings; and the World Trade Center site.
Don't worry, the governors pledged in a joint press release announcing the vetoes, they have a plan. The governors would enact a series of reforms (also needed) suggested by their own panel.
Apparently, the embarrassment of Bridgegate – in which Christie's buddies at the Port shut down local lanes on the George Washington Bridge for a mysterious "traffic study" in what quacked like political payback – wasn't enough. It seems the Port Authority's power – and money – are hard to give up.
The governors' promised reforms include streamlining the Port's leadership structure and taking certain appointments directly out of the hands of the governors.
Such measures would be a complement, not a competition, to the legislative proposals. There was no valid excuse to reject the bi-state bills that had garnered overwhelming support. But, it appears, the authority's deep pockets and current opacity are hard to resist.
To sum up:
Faux reformer Cuomo put the shiv into Port Authority reform on Saturday night (reform passed 612-0 in the NY and NJ legislatures, btw) and pushed his own PA reform (which Tom Moran of the Star Ledger says has little chance of being enacted), then put the shiv into his own teacher evaluation shield bill on Monday night and said he will push "comprehensive reforms" of the state teacher evaluation system in the next year.
You just can't make this stuff up.