New York state Democrats say their prime strategy to motivate voters this fall will be to paint Governor Andrew Cuomo’s republican opponent, as an ultra conservative who has a negative view about New York.
Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul went on the attack against the Republican candidate for governor, Rob Astorino, saying the GOP opponent and his running mate are too conservative and his portrayal of the state as economically troubled and dysfunctional is too pessimistic.
The Republican challenger in the race for New York Attorney General has begun airing TV ads and is making an issue of incumbent Eric Schneiderman’s role in a controversial ethics commission.
Republican candidate for Attorney General John Cahill has made several stops around the state in recent days, focusing on the controversial Moreland Commission.
Cahill says there are unanswered questions about how deeply involved the current Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, was with the commission. The commissions’s actions are now under federal investigation.
A Quinnipiac University poll shows the race for New York governor virtually unchanged since the spring, with incumbent Governor Andrew Cuomo far ahead of his Republican and Democratic challengers. The favorable ratings for Cuomo come after weeks of negative news stories about the governor’s alleged interference in an ethics panel, and an ongoing federal investigation.
An upstate pro-business group is out with ratings for the New York Senate and Assembly, and finds, not surprisingly, that more liberal Democrats are at odds with the group’s agenda than conservative leaning Republicans. Unshackle Upstate says that could have implications for the group’s interests if Democrats take over the Senate in November.
Voters in New York will decide in November whether the state should borrow $2 billion for new technology, including iPads in school classrooms. Teachers and school administrators who could benefit from the funds say they are supportive but want to see more details.
The Bond Act, as it reads on the November ballot, would provide access to classroom technology and high-speed internet connections, as well as offer funds to build more pre kindergarten classrooms, and replace the trailers that some overcrowded schools in New York City have been using to teach students.
New York’s school children made incremental progress in math scores but no gains in English tests in the second year of Common Core-related exams. Education officials say overall, only around one third of students actually passed the tests.
A member of a government reform group says it’s OK if New York Governor Andrew Cuomo uses his campaign coffers to finance this week’s trip to Israel if the visit is for political, rather than government purposes.
Blair Horner, with the New York Public Interest Research Group, says it’s preferable for Governor Cuomo to use funds from his $35 million campaign fund to pay for his visit to Israel than for state taxpayers to foot the bill. Horner says by using the campaign money, Cuomo is also signaling that the trip is more of a political event than official government business.
Government reform groups are split over whether an amendment on the November ballot to change the way legislative district lines are drawn is an improvement, or will make only make gerrymandering worse.
The only statewide candidate who is participating in a pilot public campaign finance program in New York says it’s been slow going, but Republican candidate for comptroller Bob Antonacci expects to collect enough individual donors to qualify for the state matching funds.