The phone is Andrew Cuomo’s instrument. Somehow distance brings out the governor’s full range of operatic inflections and rhetorical flourishes that he doesn’t deploy effectively in person. Today, on the phone, three weeks from Election Day, cruising toward a second term, he is in full Rodney Dangerfield mode.
“I passed gay marriage! I passed the toughest gun law in the country! I closed more prison cells than any governor in the history of the state! Minority job vouchers! My record of progressive accomplishment tops anyone!” Pause, dramatic reduction in volume. “Now, do you have some voices on the left that are impossible to placate in any realistic way? Yeah … Ask yourself: If he were more liberal, he would have done what? What more could I have possibly done? You’re gonna use the tax code just to take money from the rich and give it to the poor? That’s not liberalism. That’s confiscation! Liberalism was ‘Lift up the poor’ … The problem for liberals and progressives—of which I am proudly one—is you have to demonstrate you can actually do what you talk about. And that’s what I’ve been doing. My government works.”
Cuomo is quite clear here about what constitutes "liberalism" to him.
His stance on social issues make him "liberal."
Economic issues, he's clearly here:
Not that he cares to dwell on some pesky liberal carping when he’s got the whole state to worry about. Cuomo believes the center is still the most responsible place from which to govern New York—and the country, though he’s merely an informed spectator on that front, of course. Aren’t national politics increasingly polarized, with the right and the left wings setting the agendas for the Republicans and the Democrats? “That’s always been true,” Cuomo says, quickly warming to the subject. “But you’re leaving out a big piece of history. Bill Clinton wins saying to the left of the party, ‘You are unelectable.’ Bill Clinton gives a speech saying, ‘Mario Cuomo, Dukakis, Ted Kennedy are the politics of a failed Democratic Party.’ Bill Clinton does Sister Souljah, puts his finger in the chest of Jesse Jackson. That was after a period of left dominance. Clinton is then centrist-moderate-left, right? Sort of tacks back and forth between the two. Where is the national Democratic Party now? Well, they’re talking about Hillary Clinton. Her last name is Clinton, which represented that centrist-left platform. So I think that’s where the party is nationwide. And the Clinton philosophy is still a winning philosophy.”
That he doesn't understand why liberals and progressives in the state detest him shows you how clueless he is.
He remains fixated on the Clinton 90's, an era of centrism he thinks he's brought back here in NY and would like to bring back nationwide in the future.
Those days are over, however.
Income inequality since the 90's has widened considerably and Cuomo's "Lift All Boats" policies isn't working.
Alas, he doesn't seem to notice or care.