Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Arrogance Of Cuomo's Power Play Over Education Policy

Governor Andrew Cuomo is looking to take over the entire education system in New York State.

The letter he had sent to Regents Chancellor Tisch and NYSED Commissioner King makes clear he wants to call the shots on everything, including Regents appointments.

The amazing thing about this power play is, he's sitting at 42% job approval in the latest Siena poll (out this morning.)

He outraised his GOP opponent 9-1 during the campaign season yet won the fewest number of votes for any governor seeking re-election in New York since FDR.

He is under investigation by a federal prosecutor for tampering with "his" Moreland Commission on Public Corruption and he's got a ton of enemies in politics, the media and the general public who would like nothing better than to see him hurt politically.

This is not a popular governor with a popular agenda, yet he acts as if he's got the political muster and backing to ram through an epic education reform agenda that would completely change the way system runs in the state.

He does NOT have the political muster to do this.

To reiterate, in the latest Siena poll, he has a 42% job approval rating, 57% disapproval rating.

He won re-election with 54% after outspending his opponent by $40 million+, yet still couldn't get more votes than FDR in 1930.

He is under investigation for corruption and has many more enemies than friends to help him out.

If the various stakeholders, including the union leadership, come together for this fight, Andrew Cuomo CAN be beaten.

He wants you to think he is strong and the other stakeholders in this fight - parents, teachers, the teachers unions, Assembly Democrats - are weak.

The truth is, he has only as strong as we allow him to be.

12 comments:

  1. Where is good ole Randi????

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  2. Randi is getting her hair done on order to be ready to speak at the Democratic National Convention
    nominating Hilary Clinton as Americas next President,

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  3. Why cant we have a union president like Susan Kent of the PEF? She is no pushover and look what Cuomo is trying to do them, privatize them.

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  4. Because over 80% of teachers don't vote in UFT elections and those who do usually listen to their perk loving Unity Chapter leaders.

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  5. He can be beaten, but only if we, NYS teachers and our allies, mobilize for the fight and propose a compelling counter-narrative and agenda for dealing with failing public schools rather than assume that our cause is so "righteous" and "self-evident" that the public, particularly parents and wavering members of the Assembly, will find it so. I assure you they will not.

    He may be "underwater" in the polls but he still has vast amounts of support and money from very powerful people and the Republican/Independent Democrat Senate. He's succeeded in cowing the Regents, he controls the budget process to a very great degree and Sheldon Silver will be one of three (maybe four if they let in Jeff Klein) in a room where all this will be decided--he will only be able to "protect" so much and I suspect he'll protect Merryl Tisch before he defends public education and teachers against the worst of Cuomo's depredations.

    I am not defeatist--we can push back against the worst of Cuomo's tendencies. But the battle has started in earnest and if the ridiculous NYSUT letter in response to Cuomo's ultimatum to the Regents is a sign for how much we can depend on our union leaders we have a lot of work to do as individuals and with our allies to push back against the governor, the senate and the charter magnates. No one has ever prospered who has underestimated the tenacity and willfulness of even a weakened Andrew Cuomo.

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    1. I watched Charlie Rose fawning all over Joel Klein on PBS. Your point that the public does not see our cause as righteous is well taken.

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  6. Don't forget that Cuomo's political future is at stake. He is a very smart guy who has surrounded himself with very good politcal advisers. The Clinton support also will fade if Cuomo's policies anger solid blue democrats enough that there is a potential for Hillary to lose support if there is a strong enough connection between Clinton and Cuomo. Don't forget that Cuomo served in Bill Clinton's administration. When Hillary finally announces, the teaching community MUST engage her in a serious dialogue about what is happening here in NY (and, elsewhere) so we know EXACTLY where Hillary is coming from. I suspect that Cumo's rhetoric will be toned down significantly if Clinton strategists see a direct correlation between Cuomo's antics and a potential loss of support in NY for Hillary. NYSUT and the UFT should exploit this strategy if only to put a muzzle on Andy-boy. He may not listen to parents and educators BUT, you can be certain that he'll be a good little boy when the Clintons tell him to STFU and fall in line in support of teachers, public schools and organized labor. Hillary needs our support. Andrew Cuomo is a big threat to that support.

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    1. All Hillary will do is f--- us over big time. We support her at our peril.

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