Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Cuomo Sticks The Shiv Into De Blasio Before Election Day

Last spring, Governor Andrew Cuomo beat Mayor Bill de Blasio badly in fights over charter school co-locations and tax increases on wealthy New Yorkers to pay for NYC's universal pre-K plan.

De Blasio had been in a showdown with charter school entrepreneur Eva Moskowitz over co-locations of three of her schools when Cuomo helped co-ordinate a pro-charter rally in Albany and pushed through new rules in the state budget that forced New York City (and only New York City) to either find space for all charter schools or pay rent for space in privately-owned buildings.

Moskowitz and her charter school supporters are major donors to Cuomo and while the governor and the mayor were supposed to be friends going back to the days when they were both in the Clinton administration, Cuomo didn't think twice about screwing his old friend over for his wealthy charter school friends.

Cuomo also rolled de Blasio over the mayor's push for a tax on the wealthy to pay for universal pre-K in New York City.  The governor provided state money for de Blasio's pre-K plan (though not as much as the tax plan would have raised) but made sure that money did not come from increased taxes on wealthy people, many of whom are also Cuomo donors.

Again Cuomo didn't think twice about sticking it to old friend de Blasio and making sure his donors got what they wanted - no new taxes.

Cuomo was riding high after his twin showdowns with de Blasio during the budget negotiations, but that ride didn't last for long.

A challenge from the left flank of his party arose in the figure of Fordham professor Zephyr Teachout late in the spring.

Teachout attempted to get the Working Families Party ballot line during the WFP convention last May and present Cuomo with a problem for the general election - he would have had two opponents to take on, one from the right in GOP candidate Rob Astorino, one from the left in Zephry Teachout.

A Sienna poll showed Cuomo would have trouble breaking 50% if a challenge from the left emerged for the general election, so he and his campaign pulled out all the stops to make sure Teachout didn't get the ballot line.

First they had their union friends, major supporters of WFP, threaten the party with dissolution if the ballot line for the general election was given to Teachout.

Then Cuomo had his old friend Bill de Blasio intervene with the party faithful and negotiate an agreement between the governor and the party in which Cuomo would receive the ballot line in return for agreeing to work for a Democratic takeover of the State Senate.

De Blasio was supposed to be riding high after this intervention, since Cuomo had needed his help to secure the WFP line, but I thought at the time de Blasio was acting the fool for helping his old friend Andrew Cuomo in the negotiations.

On May 30, I wrote:

Is de Blasio suffering from Stockholm Syndrome or did he get something in return for mediating negotiations between Cuomo and WFP?

If you remember, it was just a short while ago that Cuomo took every opportunity to stick it to de Blasio over not just charter schools but issue after issue.

Anthony Weiner even noted how putzy Cuomo was to de Blasio in a DN piece.

Now de Blasio helps save the day for Sheriff Andy.

My guess is, seconds after the election is over, Cuomo starts sticking it to de Blasio and the unions again.

Hard to know if this is Stockholm Syndrome, stupidity or a sell-out, but whatever the hell it is, it sucks.

De Blasio's aid for Cuomo didn't stop in May at the Working Families Party convnetion.

Polls showed late in the summer that Cuomo's pro-gun, anti-abortion running mate, Kathy Hochul, could lose her primary challenge to Teachout's running mate, Tim Wu.

Cuomo again reached out to de Blasio and had the mayor (along with union buddy Randi Weingarten) issue robocalls throughout the city in support of  the"liberal" Hochul.

After the election, Wu said that internal campaign polling showed him with the momentum going into the primary, but the de Blasio robocalls essentially stopped that momentum cold and Hochul won the race.

In short, Cuomo's running mate won her primary challenge because de Blasio helped her do it.

Again I wrote at the time that de Blasio was a fool for helping Cuomo, that Cuomo wouldn't think twice about screwing his "old friend" - and Ken Lovett and Jennifer Fermino at the Daily News reported the same thing:

“For good or bad, the governor is not a person who views the world as 'I owe you one.' If someone came to him and said, ‘I was there for you and I took care of you — you owe me,’ you don’t get a good reaction,” the insider said.

A second source who has had dealings with de Blasio and Cuomo agrees.

“Andrew appreciates what Bill has done for him. But if he needed to f--k over the mayor tomorrow, he's going to do it. That’s just how he operates.”

Even I thought Cuomo would wait until after the election to "fuck over" de Blasio, but it turns out Cuomo, worried that his GOP challenger Rob Astorino is making inroads over the first reported Ebola case in the city, decided post-Election Day was too late to screw de Blasio over.

So he did it yesterday instead.

On Thursday, Cuomo and de Basio made a joint appearance to reassure city residents after it was reported a doctor who had worked with Ebola patients in West Africa had tested positive for the virus here in the city.

Both Cuomo and de Blasio took pains on Thursday to tamp down hysteria over the incident and assure New Yorkers that the chances of getting infected by Ebola on the subway or in a cab were slim.

That was Thursday.

On Friday Cuomo changed course and suddenly decided hysteria over Ebola was exactly what was needed:

On Thursday night, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo sat beside Mayor Bill de Blasio at Bellevue Hospital Center as they offered soothing words to worried New Yorkers: New York City’s first case of Ebola, they said, was no reason for panic.

Less than 19 hours later, Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat, joined the Republican governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, and struck a starkly different tone. The governors announced Friday that medical personnel returning to New York after treating Ebola patients in West Africa would be automatically subject to a 21-day quarantine.

The risk, Mr. Cuomo said, was grave. Offering an ominous hypothetical, he raised the precise situation that the mayor and the city’s health commissioner had tried to play down the night before: the danger of Ebola spreading through the subway system.

“In a region like this,” Mr. Cuomo said, “you go out one, two or three times, you ride the subway, you ride a bus, you could affect hundreds and hundreds of people.”

Within the city, an unexpected policy shift by Mr. Cuomo on Friday appeared to open up a public divide between the governor and the administration of Mr. de Blasio, a fellow Democrat. The city’s health commissioner, Dr. Mary T. Bassett, was not informed in advance of the Cuomo-Christie mandatory quarantine order and was “furious,” a senior city official who spoke to her said.

A spokeswoman for Mr. Cuomo, Melissa DeRosa, said city officials were not consulted about the quarantine policy because it pertained to airports that are run by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Mr. Cuomo’s shift came just 11 days before he will be on the ballot seeking a second term, and on a day when his long-shot Republican challenger, Rob Astorino, seized on the city’s Ebola case to assail the governor for not closing the New York airports to travelers from affected West African nations.

As Lovett and Fermino had reported in the Daily News in September, Cuomo wouldn't think twice about having to "fuck over" de Blasio if political expediency necessitated the screw job.

Apparently between Thursday night and Friday morning, political expediency necessitated Cuomo "fuck over" Bill de Blasio on the Ebola crisis.

In the same Times story on the "public rift" between Cuomo and de Blasio over Cuomo's sudden shift in policy, this is said about past health crises:

The partisan divide over how to respond to Ebola stands in stark contrast to previous public health threats over the last decade, including the anthrax attacks after Sept. 11, 2001, the West Nile virus, the avian flu and the tuberculosis outbreaks in the 1980s and 1990s. In those cases, public health officials worked largely in concert with elected ones to maintain calm and disseminate consistent information.

This time around politicians - including Cuomo and Christie, but certainly not limited to these two - are hyping the crisis for political gain.

Caught flat-footed once again by his old pal, Andrew Cuomo, it remains to be seen how de Blasio responds to the pre-election screw job by the governor.

But clearly Cuomo was showing de Blasio up yesterday at his press conference with Christie, big-timing the mayor by not alerting anybody in the de Blasio administration about the change in policy and protocol Cuomo was going to put into place with Christie at the Port Authority airports.

Much of this is de Blasio's own fault, of course.

De Blasio spent much political capital helping Cuomo in the spring with the Working Families Party and in the fall with the Hochul robocalls.

If Cuomo wins re-election with over 50% of the vote, that will happen because Bill de Blasio ensured Cuomo would not have a challenger from the left on the WFP ballot line taking double digits away from Cuomo in the general election.

Now Cuomo pays de Blasio back by sticking the shiv in him less than two weeks before Election Day.

I see two takeaways here:

One, De Blasio was a fool for expending so much political capital to help a "friend" who everybody knew would screw him over at the first opportunity.

And two, Andrew Cuomo is a sociopath, a man with no moral center who will literally do and say anything to promote himself and his career.

Neither of these takeaways are surprises, of course - we knew this stuff long before yesterday.

And indeed, Cuomo had already broken his promise to de Blasio and WFP that he would work for a Democratic takeover of the State Senate.

One thing I am surprised at, however.

I really thought Cuomo would wait until Wednesday November 5th to stick the shiv into de Blasio.

But he shoved the shiv in nearly two weeks earlier - that just shows you how desperate Cuomo is to not only win re-election but run up the score.


  1. I am so glad this happened because deBlasio has, IMHO, been an idiot. Had he fought Eva and Cuomo when they first attacked charters with ads of this own, he would be standing tall. But instead, he rolled over, allowed Farina to keep the old Klein guard and screw ATRs. It is going to be a long 3 years for deBlasio and it's too late for him to do anything about it. Cuomo and Christie has so much in common, and it does well for Cuomo to be seen with Christie before the election than deBlasio. The problem with people like Randi is after the backed the wrong horses--usually wrong choices to begin with--they stopped backing pro public school candidates. Teachout surprised them with 30% of the vote as did Thompson when he ran against Bloomberg with a very close vote. But then they backed Thompson over deBlasio who did stand with the public schools. Randi is so out of touch with getting the best candidates in office. In Florida she did nothing to back Nan Rich because the DNC wanted Crist--a Jeb Bush Reformer.

    1. I don't think they were surprised by Teachout's 34% in the primary. That's why they worked so hard to keep her off the WFP line in the general. They knew she would take serious support away from Cuomo.

  2. The last thing Randi is looking for is the best candidates. All she worries about is feathering her own nest.

  3. People need to turn their anger into positive action for change. We can plainly see the elected officials and the political operatives, who fail us. It's time to go around them from here on out. If we do this with discipline, we will effect change. It's up to us to act and move government in a positive direction. We own our role in making change happen. Keep on keeping on !

    1. That's why I keep posting - sometimes it feels like I'm posting in the wind, but on I go...