Category Archives: Women’s Equality Party

Cuomo in Long Island City (Updated)



The second stop of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s “Women’s Equality Express” campaign tour today was in Long Island City.  Appearing at before an audience composed primarily of trade union members, Cuomo added an extended reflection on his Queens roots to his campaign speech.

Press Q&A:

Cuomo spoke with the press following the rally.  With the exception of the last question, the topic was exclusively Ebola.

Update – You Can Take the Boy out of Queens …:

Cuomo began by speaking about his Queens roots.  It’s not a part of his standard stump speech, but a special addition for this Queens appearance.

Speech:

Here is Cuomo’s full campaign speech.

Coverage of his Brooklyn campaign rally is here.

Cuomo in Bed-Stuy (Updated)



Governor Andrew Cuomo’s reelection campaign brought him to three stops today, with the third and final stop a rally in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant.  Accompanied on the full tour by his running mate Kathy Hochul, he was joined in Bed-Stuy by New York City Public Advocate Tish James, Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, Assembly Member Annette Robinson and New York City Council Member Robert Cornegy.

Press Q&A:

Cuomo spoke with the press following the rally.  The questions, with one exception (more on that later here), focused on Ebola.

Update:  We look at the comment by Public Advocate Letitia James comparing Rob Astorino to Bull Connor here.

Speech:

Here is Cuomo’s full speech:

Coverage of Cuomo’s Long Island City rally is here.

Women’s Equality Party Money – Round 1 (Updated)



The “Women’s Equality Party” (“WEP”) has filed it’s first campaign finance report, the “11-Day Pre-General” election report.  Under the Election Law, that report was due today.

WEP reported contributions of $69,500 and no money expended, but it reported $62,212.55 as expenses incurred but not yet paid.  Here’s a detailed look. Continue reading

Abortion and a Catholic Governor



The centerpiece of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s reelection campaign is the “Women’s Equality Party” and it’s “Women’s Equality Agenda.”  Leading that agenda is an effort at enacting state laws expressly providing for a right to abortion, now provided by the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade.

Cuomo is Catholic.  His religion and faith are not a central part of his public personalty, but he’s mentioned his Catholic faith several times in recent days while discussing his “Women’s Equality Agenda” and Rob Astorino’s opposition to abortion.  (Astorino is also Catholic and, following church teaching on the subject, personally and politically opposes abortion.)  Elected officials who are Catholic and support abortion rights have long faced a challenge in the divergence of their church and their politics, Mario Cuomo notably among them. Continue reading

Cuomo & Clinton (Updated x 2)



Hillary Rodham Clinton joined Governor Andrew Cuomo for a rally today, supporting the governor at a “Women’s Equality Party” rally in midtown Manhattan.  Both made speeches, as did Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor Kathy Hochul, to a crowd of approximately 250 people.

Gaggle:

Cuomo spoke with the press afterward, with questions mostly focused on the election, the debate last night and the “Women’s Equality Party” and “Women’s Equality Agenda”.  Question topics included whether the “Women’s Equality Party” and “Women’s Equality Agenda” is a “smokescreen” and abortion a “bogeyman” intended to deflect attention from his record (deemed “a highly insensitive and obnoxious question” by Cuomo), his reaction to U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara’s statement yesterday that his office continues several probes related to Cuomo’s Moreland Commission, whether he’s endorsing Hillary Clinton for president, his view on the inclusion of Libertarian Party candidate Michael McDermott in the debate last night, whether he personally follows the Catholic Church’s position on abortion, whether the state will release SAFE Act assault weapon registration statistics, his position on the three November ballot propositions, whether he’ll support Hillary Clinton if she runs for president, what his girlfriend is making for dinner tonight (really), if he’s in the process of deciding whether to run for president and whether he was surprised by the New York Times endorsement he received this week.

Continue reading

Hochul on the Hustings, Hudson Edition (Updated)



Multi-party candidate for lieutenant governor Kathy Hochul campaigned through the Hudson Valley Saturday, with a “Women’s Equality Party” bus tour stopping in Mt. Kisco, Poughkeepsie and Kingston.  At each stop Hochul announced her (and running mate Andrew Cuomo’s) endorsement of the local Democratic state senate candidate; Justin Wagner in Mt. Kisco, incumbent Terry Gipson in Poughkeepsie and incumbent Cecilia Tkaczyk in Kingston.

These races are highly competitive and are expected to play a central part in determining control of the state senate.  Wagner is seeking an open seat, currently held by Republican Greg Ball.  Tkaczyk faces former state senator George Amedore, who she defeated in 2012 by 18 votes and Gipson faces a strong challenge from Republican Sue Serino.  It’s notable that Cuomo is engaging in these races, although that engagement is tempered by the lack of appearing in person.

Hochul’s Poughkeepsie appearance at Marist College, spectacularly perched above the Hudson River, included Senator Gipson declaring “well that’s a surprise” immediately after Hochul announced the Cuomo/Hochul endorsement.  It may not have been an immediate surprise, seeing as this was a planned campaign stop, but it is a marked longer-term turn of events.  In 2012 Cuomo endorsed and campaigned for Republican and then-incumbent Senator Steve Saland against Gipson.  Saland was one of four Republican senators voting in favor of marriage equality in June 2011, and Cuomo publicly supported all four.

When I asked Hochul about the change from opposing to supporting Gipson, she offered that she and Cuomo “feel very strongly that Senator Gipson will be the vote we need to get the full Women’s Equality Agenda through the legislature.”

We also spoke with Hochul about the three propositions on the November ballot – her views are here.

Three Cities, Three Gaggles, Three Speeches (Updated)



Governor Andrew Cuomo revved up his reelection campaign Saturday with a three city bus tour.  Visits to Albany, Syracuse and Rochester included a rally and speech in each, followed by a gaggle, the somewhat informal press Q&As in which the press and the subject stand in a tight circle for their back and forth.

Today’s bus tour was billed as a “Women’s Equality Party” tour, with Governor Cuomo focused on his “Women’s Equality Act.”  His reelection campaign has mostly been conducted through the Women’s Equality Party ballot line he’s created for November, with his focus on codifying, and thereby protecting, the right to an abortion.

To start our report, here is video of each of his three gaggles and speeches.  Questions were primarily about the Women’s Equality Party and Women’s Equality Agenda and Cuomo’s comments on addressing sexual harassment throughout society.  Among the other topics were Rob Astorino’s characterization of recent Cuomo comments as “race baiting”, the Vito Lopez matter and it’s handling by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, an Onondaga Lake construction project and the reports of travelers at Newark Airport who may have the Ebola virus (all in the Syracuse gaggle).

Albany:


Syracuse:


Rochester:

Quinn Presses Pay Equity (Updated)



Christine Quinn pressed the issue of pay equity today in her new role as the face of the “Women’s Equality Party”.  Speaking at a press conference at Teamsters Local 237, she continued her recent public efforts at promoting the “Women’s Equality Agenda,” with a particular focus today on the pay equity component of that agenda and proposed law.

Update – Buffalo Jills:

Here is the full question and answer on the Buffalo Jills lawsuit:

Chris, Rob & The Early Arrival



Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino arrived at a campaign event 30 minutes ahead of it’s scheduled start Tuesday, to Christine Quinn’s consternation.

Quinn, former speaker of the New York City Council, is the chief public face of the “Women’s Equality Party”, a ballot line recently created by Governor Andrew Cuomo, and she hoped to confront Astorino with a pledge that Team Cuomo is pushing.  The pledge essentially provides that signatories will support legislation next year on a “Women’s Equality Plan”, covering a variety of issues ranging from pay equity to human trafficking laws to “allow[ing] for the recovery of attorneys’ fees in employment and credit and lending cases.”  Most contentious, however, is a proposed codification of abortion rights.  Should Roe v. Wade ever be overturned, and states permitted to determine state by state whether abortion is legal, that would become a significant legal matter.

Astorino says he supports nine of the ten points in the “Women’s Equality Plan”, objecting to the codification of abortion rights.  Team Cuomo has been pushing the Women’s Equality Party and Women’s Equality Plan in an effort to highlight Astorino’s opposition to allowing abortions, and Quinn sought a face to face moment Tuesday.  Here’s what happened.

From Gotham to George, Lake



Gubernatorial candidates campaigned Thursday, with Governor Andrew Cuomo holding a press conference in Gotham and Rob Astorino speaking with the press following a speech to the New York State Business Council at a conference on Lake George.

Cuomo:

Cuomo held a press conference to announce a “women’s equality pledge.”  Cuomo, and running mate Kathy Hochul have created a “Women’s Equality Party” ballot line for November, and they’re now pushing for all candidates for state office to sign a pledge in support of their “women’s equality agenda.” Among the other topics was Astorino’s recent ad labeling Cuomo a “unicorn killer.”  What  follows is the Q&A portion of their press conference in midtown Manhattan.  They were joined by former council speaker Christine Quinn.

Astorino:

Astorino addressed the New York State Business Council at it’s annual conference Thursday night, held in Bolton Landing on Lake George.  The Business Council should be friendly territory for Republican Astorino, but the group is poised to endorse Andrew Cuomo on Friday.  Astorino challenged the Council and the business community as complicit in New York’s economic shortcomings, and much of the questioning centers on his speech and the audience reaction.  Other topics included whether the Cuomo campaign has responded concerning candidate debates and Astorino’s take on Cuomo’s unicorn comments.

Hochul On The Street



We joined Democratic Lieutenant Governor candidate Kathy Hochul Tuesday evening at a campaign event on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.  Hochul appeared at the 72nd Street/Broadway subway stop, greeting people emerging from the station.

We discussed the subway, the Buffalo area native’s experience campaigning in New York City, whether the “Women’s Equality Party” is a sham or a stunt and whether she’s considered a future possibility that the United States Attorney for the Western District of New York, her husband William J. Hochul, could investigate state government generally or the Executive Chamber particularly.

Hochul On The Upper West Side (Updated)



Kathy Hochul, Democratic candidate for Lieutenant Governor, was joined at an Upper West Side rally today by House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and a group of Manhattan Democratic elected officials that included Congressman Charles B. Rangel, Assembly Members Keith Wright and Linda Rosenthal, Council Members Dan Garodnick and Inez Dickens and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer.

The rally promoted the “Women’s Equality Party”, a ballot line created by Governor Cuomo   and which asserts that it’s purpose is to “promote issues that are critical to women and our communities.”

Update – Hochul:

What’s lacking in the Democratic Party that leads you to create a new ballot line?  I asked Hochul:

Here is Hochul’s full, albeit brief, speech.  She begins by thanking House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi for attending, noting that in Hochul’s 2011 special election “I hadn’t met you yet, but according to all the TV ads by the Koch brothers and Karl Rove you would have thought we were shopping buddies.”  David Koch, one of those same Koch brothers, is a substantial contributor to Hochul’s running mate, Governor Andrew Cuomo.  David Koch and his his wife Julia have given Andrew Cuomo a combined $87,000 according to state Board of Elections records.  (Here’s a flashback to Republican mayoral candidate Joe Lhota discussing David Koch’s contributions to Andrew Cuomo.)

Charles B. Rangel:

Congressman Rangel attended, giving a speech in support of Hochul.  He gave a particularly memorable performance afterwards, however.  From quizzing a New York Observer reporter as to whether he really works for the NY Post to reacting with playful shock at the sight of another reporter who extensively covered Rangel’s recent congressional primary, Rangel parried, attacked and laughed, all while defending Andrew Cuomo.  Here’s his full press availability: