Thursday, April 17, 2014

Woman's Party and Women's Rights and Wrongs 1232

NYT Says WEP is Fake and That Cross Endorsements Fusion Voting Should Be Ended

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s preferred slate to run the Women’s Equality Party got a boost from an appellate court decision, but a ruling on a similar case is due early next week in RochesterGannett Albany writes:

As the clock ticks closer to Election Day and further past the usual date for finalizing ballots, two legal appeals have the potential to solidify Cuomo’s control of the Women’s Equality Party.*  The WEP Remains In Debt (YNN) *The Times writes that New York lawmakers should work to get rid ofthird parties that are simply tools of the two major parties and that only exist to be manipulated by Democrats and Republicans and confuse voters:What makes this system especially confounding is that a candidate’s name can appear on two or more ballot lines. Last year, New Yorkers could vote for Gov. Andrew Cuomo on the Democratic, Working Families, Independence or Women’s Equality Party. Now, New York Republicans are trying to get rid of the Women’s Equality Party, which favors Democrats. The party was created last year by Mr. Cuomo to show the governor’s support for women’s issues and appeal to women voters. Republican lawyers, citing procedural problems in the party’s creation, are fighting in more than a dozen counties to get it bumped from ballots in November’s local and state elections. The Republicans have not challenged the minor parties that normally support them, like the Conservative Party and the Stop Common Core Party, now undergoing a name change to the Reform Party.

Real Problem Are the Lobbyists Who Work As Campaign Consultants and Control Millions in PAC $$$
 Even so, their challenge to the Women’s Equality Party is just and makes sense; it was a fake party to begin with. A few female politicians liked the idea, while many others found the idea of a separate party insulting. Why all these separate parties? New York politicians endorse this antiquated system, called fusion voting, because they can pick up extra votes on the extra ballot lines. The mini-parties, which often push more extreme policies, mostly survive by nominating the same big-name candidates as the two big parties. That is especially true during elections for governor every four years, when state law requires a party to earn 50,000 votes in order to stay on future ballots. (The Women’s Equality Party squeaked by last year by earning 53,802 votes). New York lawmakers should work to make the ballot less of a muddle. One way to make matters simpler for voters would be to require a politician to pick one party — and one party line. If every party had a different candidate, the extraneous parties would have to pick good candidates, or simply disappear.* Astorino: Nearly 2,000 Candidates Running On Reform Line (YNN) * The NYT says there are too many political parties in the state, and lawmakers should work to make the ballot “less of a muddle” by requiring candidates to run on one – and only one – ballot line, with no cross-endorsements allowed. (The paper also called the governor’s WEP “a fake party to begin with).* As the courts continue to fight over the Women’s Equality Party, military ballots are supposed to go out on Friday – provoking a sense of urgency in resolving the question of whether anyone will be on the party’s line, the Times Union reports: 

15 Months Before Cuomo Created the WEP He Wanted to End Wilson-Pakula
“Something has to be done about Wilson-Pakula and cross-endorsements. You have mayoral candidates that are talking about this outwardly, about what they have to do to get on the ballot. That whole electoral process stinks and has for a long time. I think there’s an opportunity to reform that,” he said. “In an ideal world,” he said, “you’d have no cross endorsements.”* Cuomo says so long to Wilson-Pakula - Legislative Gazette April 22, 2013.  Unlike in most states, New York electoral law permits electoral fusion. As a result, New York ballots tend to list a large number of political parties. The endorsement of major party candidates by smaller parties can be important since smaller parties often use this ballot feature to offer a candidate an additional line on the ballot. * Cuomo Allies Plan a Political Party Focusing on Women ...(7/17/2014, NYT)

The Women's Party Gang That Could Not Make the Ballot
Andrew Cuomo’s accidental lesson in New York’s ridiculous election laws (NYP) We doubt Gov. Cuomo meant to show the absurdity of New York’s third-party laws when he set up the Women’s Equality Party, but it’s sure worked out that way. This week, a judge blocked five candidates — including a former officer of the party — from running on the WEP line. Cuomo created the WEP to get extra votes for his 2014 re-election effort — and to pull votes from the lefty Working Families Party. To impose his rules, Cuomo needs OKs from three of the four candidates the WEP endorsed last year, but state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli won’t play ball. (Good for them.) Yet an appellate judge has ruled that the party can still cross-endorse candidates, even as the broader party-control issue is litigated. But in separate decisions Tuesday and Wednesday, state Supreme Court Justice Richard Platkin ruled that five Democrats can’t get the WEP line, too, because they failed to submit proper affidavits from the interim (Cuomo-linked) party leaders.  Most embarrassingly, one of those kept off the line is state Senate candidate Barbara Fiala — who was (briefly) Cuomo’s handpicked choice to chair the Women’s Equality Party.  That’s right: One Cuomo flunky lost the WEP line because she failed to get signed affidavits from other Cuomo WEP flunkies. So-called parties created to exploit New York’s cross-endorsement loophoole have long been an outrage. With the ongoing saga of the Women’s Equality Party, they’re now an outright farce.* It’s unlikely Cuomo meant to show the absurdity of New York’s third-party laws when he set up the Women’s Equality Party, but it’s sure worked out that way, and it’s leaving the governor looking flat-footed, the Post writes: 

The WEP Which Was Good for Gov's Re-Election is Now A Problem 
Cuomo’s drive to win female support keeps bringing him fresh embarrassments — with losses this week over the leadership of his Women’s Equality Party and evidence of a gender wage gap in his administration

A web of legal challenges has clouded the future of the Women’s Equality Party and its viability, a ballot line that Cuomo founded last year to great fanfare.
Andrew Cuomo burned twice more by his pandering to women (NYP) On Monday, state Supreme Court Justice Frank Caruso confirmed the governor’s loss of control of the Women’s Equality Party that Cuomo created last year. Then, on Tuesday, Politico New York’s Bill Mahoney pointed out that the governor’s not living up to his own “wage gap” rhetoric. Cuomo’s taken to talking up the (misleading and meaningless) statistic that women earn just 84 cents for every dollar men earn. Just last month, he denounced the “chronic sexism that still exists in society.” Yet Mahoney notes that the 96 women employed in the governor’s Executive Chamber are mostly in lower-paying jobs, while “the 52 men are disproportionately represented in the positions with the highest salaries and most power.” * The New York Post: “Cuomo’s drive to win female support keeps bringing him fresh embarrassments — two this week alone.”* Cuomo defended his administration’s record on hiring and paying women after an analysis found the upper echelon of his office is male-dominated and pointed to the addition of his lieutenant governor, Kathy Hochul, as proof, State of Politicsreports: Thursday  After two courts declined to hand down decisions on who controls the Women’s Equality Party, the three-way battle appears to be headed to the appellate division court in Rochester, the Times Union reports: *As Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Party encountered a major legal roadblock this week, the party created by his 2014 opponent, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, is showing signs of vitality. * The fight over the future of the Women's Equality Partyreminds @CaseySeiler of "Murder on the Orient Express." (TU) 
Can A Fight To Control the WEP Women's Party Creasted to Re-Elect Cuomo, Make It Real? Judge: No

Tuesday Update 
A state Supreme Court justice ruled that none of the three parties trying to gain control of the Women’s Equality Party have a legitimate legal claim to its leadership structure and ruling making powers, State of Politics reports:  * PoliticoNewYork: Women underrepresented at top levels of Cuomo administration * Andy Cuomo has Lost Control of his OWN PARTY!: Three (3) want WEP control; none can have it - (TU) * Here’s the best way to describe a complex tussle for control of the fledgling Women’s Equality party created by Gov. Andrew Cuomo last year: Three groups want to control it, but a judge says none of them can. * Perhaps the most prominent opponent to a methadone clinic sought to relocate to Manhattan’s financial district in 2011, was Sheldon Silver, then the powerful speaker of the Assembly who represented that neighborhood. He didn’t reveal, according to federal prosecutors, that a real estate developer from whom he was personally profiting, had asked him to block the project.* Hochul: Cuomo Administration Seeking More Women (YNN) * While Cuomo places an ever-greater emphasis on gender inequality in his public rhetoric,women still occupy a relatively small percentage of his administration’s top jobs. And the women who work for him women earn an average of 73 cents for every dollar made by men.* Responding to a recent news report, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul defended Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration’s record on hiring and paying women, saying she’s “living proof” of a commitment to promote women in government, State of Politicsreports:   * Hochul also said an appeal is being planned in a Niagara County judge’s decision to prevent candidates from running on the Women’s Equality Party ballot line, but it’s unclear if the appeals process will happen before November, State of Politicswrites:   * An analysis by Politico New York found that while Cuomo places an ever-greater emphasis on gender inequality in his public rhetoric, women still occupy a relatively small percentage of his administration’s top jobs: 

Women's Party
At the height of his re-election campaign last year, Governor Andrew Cuomo helped create the statewide Women's Equality Party to try and give him a political boost last November. Critics say that not much has been done since then to build the party or even promote its existence, however. Supporters now claim the party will play a critical role in upcoming elections. 08:14 PM* * Some Democrats, including Assembly Majority Leader Joseph Morelle, are reluctant to support the Women’s Equality Party, which was created by Cuomo last year, State of Politicsreports:

Cuomo’s ‘women’ problem: the perils of phony parties (NYP Ed) Gov. Cuomo wins this month’s chutzpah award: He called it a “shame” that the goals of the nascent Women’s Equality Party — created solely for the political benefit of one Andrew Cuomo — might be overwhelmed by “politics.” On Tuesday, the state Board of Elections declined to rubber-stamp Cuomo’s handpicked choice to run the WEP in the face of two challenges. The next day, the governor told reporters: “I’d like to see a party — a political force — that” takes on “pervasive sexism and discrimination against women” and “resonates that message time and time again. Not as a governor, frankly, but as a father of three girls, I’d like to see that. It’s a shame if that gets destroyed.” Just what prompted Cuomo to play the father-of-girls card?  ast year, the governor was at risk of not getting the endorsement of the lefty Working Families Party — which could’ve cost him thousands of votes. Ultimately, he got it, but not without paying a price. So Cuomo petitioned to craft a ballot line for the WEP, with himself and running mate Kathy Hochul as the nominees. Nominally, that reinforced his effort to score on “women’s issues.” But he surely expected a few innocent souls to accidentally vote the WEP line rather than the WFP one. Half a century ago, the state law that allowed minor parties to cross-endorse major-party candidates was a boost to political competition. Today, the only real third parties are the Greens, Libertarians and others that always run their own candidates. 

All the other “third parties” are essentially just vehicles for insiders to game the system, with the kleptocratic WFP leading the way. And last year, the abuse sank to farce, as Cuomo set up the WEP while his Republican rival Rob Astorino launched a “Stop Common Core Party.” Worse, both “lines” drew the 50,000 votes needed to get guaranteed ballot slots for the following four years. (Astorino took the opportunity to change his pet’s name to “Reform Party.”) No one’s tried to hijack Reform (yet), but one woman thought the Women’s Equality Party should be more than a just a vehicle for one man’s political ambitions. Cecilia Tkaczyk, a former Democratic state senator, last month drafted a separate set of WEP rules, challenging Cuomo’s rules as well as his pick for party chair. Then two Republican county clerks offered a third set of party rules. All of which led the state Board of Elections to punt the issue down the road last week.

Death Threats Female Legislators 
Female legislators receive death threats, racist taunts (NYP) At least six female legislators in the Assembly have received death threats and racist taunts, sources said. “You racist white b—h… daughter of a white slut crakkker,” read one letter viewed by The Post. The State Police are investigating what sources called a series of disturbing letters sent over the last several weeks with a return address falsely claiming they came from the office of Speaker Carl Heastie. Assembly Education Committee Chairwoman Cathy Nolan, a Queens Democrat, is among those who got one of the threats. Republicans Jane Corwin and Claudia Tenney, both upstaters, also received the rants, written on a typewriter. “Carl Heastie has given permission,” one frightening threat read. “You will be killed.”

Walking Dead Pols Campaign
‘Ghost committees’ continue to proliferate (Capital)  At least 55 campaign committees registered for politicians who are no longer in state or local office or actively campaigning have reported some activity in 2015, according to disclosure reports submitted to the state Board of Elections. These committees have more than $14.7 million in their campaign accounts, more than 15 percent of the total reported by every state and local politician. Many belong to former elected officials who are lobbyists, deceased or incarcerated. The practice of maintaining so-called "ghost committees" seems to be increasing. In 2012, former politicians had about $11 million in their campaign accounts. That year, theNew York Times editorial board criticized the continued existence of these campaign accounts. “After a state politician leaves office, it’s time to close up shop, including the campaign fund,” they wrote.

Sexual Harassing OK With the Council 

Teachout Blasts Women's Party  

WEP and WFP Operatives Battle for Control of Ballot Lines Using Voters As Pawns On Fake Trump Up Claims
Since Cuomo isn’t pitching himself on the Working Families Party line—especially not with women, a key voting bloc—the labor-backed party has tapped veteran activist and feminist Gloria Steinem to do it for him, Stateof Politics reports:  * Women's Equality Event with Secretary Clinton and Governor Cuomo 
The Nation editorial board argues that the best way to end corruption, reform politics and counter inequality in New York State is to keep the Working Families Party strong: Vote Working Families Party to Pressure Andrew Cuomo * * Mayor de Blasio won’t be joining the ranks of Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Party on Election Day, telling reporters, “If you check my party registration, you will find I’m a Democrat,” the Daily News reports:

How Cuomo won over women

Is he transparently catering to female voters? You bet. Is it working? Like a charm.* Tactics such as the Women’s Equality Party are hollow political ploys made by Cuomo to gain votes from women—and they have worked, the Daily News’ Bill Hammondwrites: If this were pre-19th Amendment New York and only men could vote, Cuomo would be fighting for his political life. An Oct. 22 Siena College poll showed him losing to Astorino among male voters by two points, 41% to 43%. But the same poll showed Cuomo romping by an astonishing 40 points among women, 65% to 25%. Thanks to that 42-point gender gap, Cuomo was cruising in Siena’s overall results, 54% to 33%.

 Quinn Claims ‘Women’s Equality’ Line Will Make WFP Stronger (NYO) * Teachout Rips Quinn, Women’s Equality Party at NOWEndorsement(NYO) Hillary Clinton stumps for Andrew Cuomo's re-electioncampaign, but audience seems more interested in herAs Clinton moved to the podium, shouts of '2016! 2016!' erupted in the Grand Hyatt ballroom. When she finished with her introduction of the governor, about two dozen attendees quietly filed out the door.
Ben Max ‏@TweetBenMax 
I have a hard time respecting anyone who advocates the women's equality agenda (or party) and refuses to criticize Sheldon Silver

A Cuomo rally in Manhattan yesterday seemed the clearest signal yet that the governor would put aside his own presidential ambitions to support Hillary Clinton should she run.
Cuomo, on a questionnaire seeking the endorsement of the NYC-based good government group Citizens Union, declined to circle either “support” or “oppose” on the fill-in-the-blank portion regarding whether the state attorney general should be empowered to investigate public corruption, State ofPolitics reports:  * In advance of governor's debate, Bharara rips Albany's "corruptiondisaster"  * US Attorney Preet Bharara calls state government 'acorruption disaster' (NYDN) * Lovett: "The one-hour format, with two minor partycandidates sharing the stage, left many key issues undiscussed." * As Scheiderman probes Airbnb, hotel industry donates(Capital) * "The governor bucked the conventional wisdom that hewould play it safe ..(WSJ) * Competing interests fund same group in Senate battle (CrainsNY) * Gov. Andrew Cuomo was not the star at his campaign event today, as Hillary Clinton was greeted by chants of “2016,” but the governor did boost the former secretary of state’s potential candidacy for president by saying he hopes she does something “big,” the New York Times writes: 
Republican candidate for governor Rob Astorino called on Cuomo to apologize to Hillary Clinton for calling the town where the Clinton’s live “discriminatory,” a reference to Cuomo’s attacks of him in last night’s debate, the Daily News writes: * Cuomo released a 245-page policy book for his 2014 campaign, which calls for a $500 million investment in broadband internet access, the creation of an infrastructure bank and upgrades to JFK and LaGuardia airports,State of Politicsreports:  * Labor unions have flooded Senate Democrats’ campaign coffers heading into the final weeks before Election Day, with the party’s campaign conference receiving more than $400,000 in one day, State of Politics reports:  * Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli are hitting the campaign trail together for a get-out-the-vote effort, with Gov. Cuomo noticeably absent from their event schedule, State of Politics reports:h * Hillary Clinton makes a pitch for Cuomo(WSJ) * Cuomo, Astorino take campaigns in different directions aftertheir only debate(BN) * Better Late Than Never Dept.: Cuomo finally releases hisplatform... a little over a week from Election Day. * If ClintonRuns for President, Cuomo’s On Board (Daily Beast) * Working Families Party: Vote Our Ballot Line (NYO) * Another Twist in Drama of Clintons and Cuomos (NYT) Fracking Cuomo delays NY fracking study release until after election (NYP)* Astorino tried to capitalize on his one and only televiseddebate with Cuomo, and said he had received a “flood of donations” after the event. Meanwhile, Cuomo moved on, and sought to downplay talk of any other debates.* Hillary Clinton’s appearance at a Gov. Andrew Cuomo campaign event was the latest chapter in the drama of the Clintons and the Cuomos that goes back more than two decades, The Times writes:  * Cuomo's office tightly controls public records - AssociatedPress - The BuffaloNews(BN) * Andrew Cuomo's administration keeps tight controls on publicrecords, advocacy groups say - Newsday @Newsday*  With 11 Days To Go, Astorino Has $1M(YNN) * Cuomo Has $15.7M, Spends $8.6M In Three Weeks (YNN) The filing shows that he has transferred $4.4 million to the state Democratic committee, which has largely been used as a surrogate to launch attack ads against Astorino. * Asked on CNN’s New Day whether an ax-wielding man who attacked four NYPD officers had any ties to terrorism, Cuomo pivoted to pokingfun at his brother, Chris, who co-hosts the show. * Job growth a key issue in NY governor's race: Following yearsof high unemployment and decades of decline upst... (Fox News) * Cuomo’s office tightly controls public records (Daily Record)

2014 Gov Race: Cuomo, Astorino, Teachout

The NYP is Wrong to Call Cuomo A Maestro He is Really A MAGICIAN 

Andrew Cuomo — the maestro (NYP) Andrew Cuomo has pulled off a brilliant move, one that gives him the Working Families Party slot on the ballot even as he undermines that party’s future.  WFP, recall, endorsed Gov. Cuomo for re-election despite big policy differences. That’s because WFP leaders calculated the endorsement was their best route to gaining the 50,000 votes they need to retain an automatic ballot line for the next four years.The governor, meanwhile, wanted the WFP endorsement, a tool of the city’s biggest unions, primarily to cripple his challenger in the Democratic primary, Zephyr Teachout, who would have benefited enormously from WFP backing.Since then he’s barely mentioned the WFP.* Cuomo's New Women's Political Party Serves Multiple Purposes (WXXI)

The Leaders of the Women's Party Have Said Nothing About the Albany Sexual harassment Slush Fund
Meanwhile, he formed a new ballot line, the Women’s Equality Party — and appeared in an ad touting it along with his girlfriend and his daughters. WFP leaders now fear Cuomo’s new party line could siphon enough votes from their party that it loses its ballot position. Which only highlights the corruption of a system, unique to New York, that allows parties to cross-endorse candidates on other lines instead of running their own candidates. The incentive here is for minor parties to sell their endorsements to the highest bidder. But it doesn’t prevent that bidder from acquiring other lines. If the WFP now find itself on the losing end of the deal with the gov, it has no one to blame but its own leaders. * More WEP Upset (YNN) * Cuomo Has Book, Will Travel (YNN)* Consternation over Cuomo’s push to create a Women’s Equality Party line is growing among Democratic women who worry that the effort will hurt down-ballot candidates running on Row A, State of Politics reports: 

Cuomo Plays the Women's Vote to the Max 

Women help Gov. Cuomo to 20-point lead over Rob Astorino inQuinnipiac poll of likely November voters (NYDN) Incumbent Democrat Cuomo, who's been making an appeal to female voters via his "Women's Equality" party, trounces Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino 51% to 31%, with a 32-point lead among women. Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins pulls eight percent of the vote in a three-way matchup. In an August Quinnipiac poll of registered (not likely) New York voters, Cuomo held a 28-point lead over the GOP's Astorino. “New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo got a head start on the Quinnipiac University poll with his weekend campaign bus ride touting women's issues. A monster lead among women voters powers him past Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino,” said pollster Maurice Carroll.* Hochul discusses family connection to domestic abuse (Capital) Cuomo's running mate said that her grandmother was a victim of domestic abuse, an experience that shaped both her and her mother's activism on the issue. * Statement on Gov. Cuomo's "Women's Equality Party"Ballot Line from Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor (R,C,I - Fishkill) "Cuomo defended benefits to Liazonsaying the word 'start-up' doesnt refer 2 how mature the biz is" (NBC) * A NYPIRG analysis shows Gov. Andrew Cuomo has amassed nearly half the $44.9 million in campaign cash he has raised since December 2010 from just 331 donors. Cuomo’s big-money donations of more than $40,000 dwarf those brought in by Republican Rob Astorino, who snagged just 17 donors with that kind of generosity. *NY Dems see cash cow in Rob Astorino's refusal to releasefive years of taxes(NYDN) * Debate Settled, Cuomo And Astorino Spar On Circumstances (YNN) * Business Council Endorses Cuomo (YNN) * Q-Poll: Cuomo 51, Astorino 31(YNN) * Latest Polls * A Quinnipiac poll shows State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli leading GOP opponent Bob Antonacci 56 percent to 28 percent, Cuomo ahead of Rob Astorino 51 percent to 31 percent, and State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman leading GOP challenger John Cahill 46 percent to 34 percent, the Observerreports:  * The same Quinnipiac poll shows Cuomo enjoying a 32-point lead among female voters, the Daily News reports * The state Business Council announced endorsements for both Cuomo and Republican Attorney General candidate John Cahill, despite their stark political differences, Capitol Confidential reports:  * Cahill and State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman have agreed to a live, televised debate in front of an audience at Hilbert College in Hamburg, just outside BuffaloState of Politicsreports:

DiNapoli Hit At Debate For Signing Off On Lopez Silver Sexual Abuse Hush Fund

SUCKING TAXPAYERS: Ex-AssemblymanVito Lopez's sexual harassment case creates soaring legal bill as state forksover $700G(NYDN) The state already has forked over nearly $700,000 to two law firms hired by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and the Assembly to defend them against lawsuits filed last year by two of Lopez’s accusers - and the trials are still months away.The accusers, Victoria Burhans and Chloe Rivera, charged in their lawsuits that Silver was "deliberately indifferent" to Lopez's pervy ways, creating a hostile work environment. The firm Proskauer Rose, hired by Silver to defend him against a federal lawsuit brought by the two women, received $367,443 as of July, according to data provided by the state controller's office. And the firm Hogan Lovells, which is defending the Assembly in a similar suit brought in state court by Burhans and Rivera, has been paid $309,831.

Silver (D-Manhattan) and the Assembly hired the firms after state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman bowed out of thecase because his staff had advised Silver's office in negotiating a secret settlement with two other Lopez victims. That settlement cost taxpayers $103,000. Schneiderman, however, determined Silver could have the state cover the costs of his defense. Disgraced Vito Lopez a big part of state controller debate(NYDN) DiNapoli touted his record cleaning up his office after taking over in early 2007 from Alan Hevesi, who ended up going to prison over his role in a massive pay-to-play pension fund scam during his time in office. But Antonacci hit him for not doing enough to crack down on state government corruption. He criticized the incumbent Democrat for signing off on the payment of a $103,000 secret settlement Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver reached with two of the victims who accused Lopez of sexual harassment. Antonacci repeatedly referred to Lopez as "Gropez." Crains and Newsday Endorse Cahill saying Cahill promises more transparency than the “overly politicized” incumbent Eric SchneidermanNewsday endorsed Republican John Cahill for AG (Newday)* Crain's, following Newsday, endorses Cahill for AG overSchneiderman:(Crains) * The League of Conservation Voters endorsed both Schneiderman and Cahill, while the Sierra Club’s Atlantic chapter backed only Schneiderman, State of Politicsreports: 

He also accused DiNapoli of not doing enough to go after lawmakers who abuse the taxpayer-funded travel expense system. DiNapoli countered that in the past two years his office was part of investigations that led to 80 arrests of public officials and the recovery of $12 million. Most recently, he was part of the probe that led to twin state and federal indictments of Assemblyman William Scarborough (D-Queens) on charges that he put in for thousands of dollars in travel expenses for which he was not entitled. As for his approval of the Lopez settlement contract, DiNapoli argued as long as a contract is legal, it's not the role of the controller to decide whether it is appropriate or not. "When there's fraud, when there's malfeasance, when there's corruption, those are the instances to stop a payment," he said. "But you cannot pick and choose."* Sole Debate in Race for New York StateComptroller Is Gentlemanly (NYT)

de Blasio Has Women's Party Problem 
With Revenge to de Blasio Quinn is Having A Party
De Blasio skips gay pride dinner honoring Quinn (NYP) “He had a scheduling conflict is my understanding,” said Allison Steinberg, a rep for the Empire State Pride Agenda, which sponsored the Fall Dinner. “That’s what his office told us.” But de Blasio had no public events listed on his schedule Thursday.

Louis Flores ‏@maslowsneeds 
Now we know why Quinn all of sudden cares about women's issues : WEP a vehicle for political revenge against BdB/WFP. @SquarePegDem @fud31 * As Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s memoir hits bookstores Tuesday, Cuomo will hit the interview circuit—raising his profile in New York and nationally three weeks before Election Day, the Daily News writes:  

Who Do They Think They Are 

The Women's Party Not Comment on the Silver Lopez Albany Hush Fund Show Their Disdain for New Yorkers
The governor’s use of campaign funds for gifts to State Police underscores how even in small, sometimes well-intentioned ways, a blurry law is abused, the Times Union writes:  * Cuomo withholds fund-raising details until chided (Capital) The administration of Governor Andrew Cuomo has refused to release details about the governor's political fund-raising, stating more than six months after Capital requested records under the Freedom of Information Law that it considers anything not posted on his pre-edited public schedule to be "exempt" from public disclosure. Cuomo's prodigious fund-raising has netted nearly $45 million since he was elected in 2010, and has drawn scrutiny this electoral season from Republicans and Democrats alike. Capital requested schedule records that would have offered details on Cuomo's Hollywood junket in late January as well as another event in Albany last September. * Gov. Cuomo's book tour gets started with CBS interview(NYDN) * Cuomo's campaign faces "enthusiasm gap," say someNY Democrats, who cite big lead, friction on left (Newsday) * Cuomo To Charlie Rose: I Don’t Delegate (YNN)The Real Estate Board of NY spent another $225,000 on stateSenate Republican candidates in the last several days(YNN)
Diane Ravitch ‏@DianeRavitch  

Astorino Wants Bharara to Investigate Women's Equality Party "Widespread Pattern of Fraud”
Astorino wants investigation of Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Party(NYP) Rob Astorino is asking US Attorney Preet Bharara — already probing Gov. Cuomo in the Moreland Commission scandal — to widen his investigation to include a widespread “pattern of fraud” involving Cuomo’s newly created Women’s Equality Party. The Republican gubernatorial hopeful, citing six recent state Board of Elections decisions tossing Democratic Senate candidates off the WEP ballot line because of unlawful nominating petitions, said that both the US Attorney’s Office and district attorneys where the Senate races are being held should seek to hold those responsible criminally liable.  

Sunset Quinn Ready For My Close Up Cuomo

Christine Quinn leads Women’s Equality Party rally(NYDN)

Christine Quinn expects to keep campaigning for Cuomo, even after the November elections, with an emphasis on the 10-point Women’s Equality Agenda, Capital New York reports: 

Former NYC Council Speaker Chris Quinn on whether she’ll get a job with the Cuomo admin: “I’ve not talked to anybody in the Cuomo administration – not the governor or anybody else – about a job.
Charmian Neary ‏@CharmianNeary  

.@WillBredderman a FAKe womens party dreamed up by men to defeat a real woman @ZephyrTeachout. I guess @chriscquinn needs a job.

Women and Their Groups Have Their Own Blue Wall of Silence to Protect Speaker Silver
So any potential liability, Mintzer added, could fall directly on Silver, who is also named in the suit as an “aider and abettor” of Lopez’s alleged serial-perv behavior in Albany. Mintzer during the hearing also reiterated some of his clients’ allegations against Lopez while working for him in 2012, including that he had them “massage his hands while driving,” attempted to stick their hands by his private parts and would routinely request that they “not wear a bra at work.” Silver lawyer Bettina Plevin said she believes “liability falls exclusively” with Lopez because “it is not Silver’s job to investigate complaints.” Mintzer disagreed, saying Silver should be held liable “because he has hiring and firing power in the Assembly.” Lopez reportedly hasn’t paid a $330,000 fine the state Legislative Ethics Commission hit him with last year for sexually harassing staff members.
Albany Hush Fund Cover Up, Press Containment Timeline

New York ranks 33rd in the nation for the percentage of women holding state Legislature seats at 21 percent. The national average is 24 percent.

* State lawmakers introduced a stand-alone bill to toughen penalties for sex traffickers after similar legislation failed last year as part of the Women’s Equality Act, The Wall Street Journal writes:

de Blasio Has Made Women Equal Partner and More At City Hall?  

The Women of 
City Hall
The Women of New York’s City Hall(NYT) The longtime fraternity of government power — a boys’ club that women have been admitted to for years but without ever becoming a dominant force — now resembles a sorority where women are helping set Mayor Bill de Blasio’s agenda, squeezing real estate developers for better deals, and prodding entrenched bureaucrats out of their comfort zones.
“The longtime fraternity of government power now resembles a sorority where women are helping set Mayor Bill de Blasio’s agenda, squeezing real estate developers for better deals, and prodding entrenched bureaucrats out of their comfort zones. …At meetings at every level throughout City Hall, women now equal or outnumber men.” And even the men in the administration, according to Deputy Mayor Lilliam Barrios-Paoli, have a different quality than those she’d worked with under previous mayors. “The men in this administration are in touch with their feminine side,” she told the paper. “There’s a gentler group. I’m used to the high masculinity, testosterone-driven group, and they’re not.”

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