THE CAPITOL CONNECTION: All new faces on state scene?

ANDREW CUOMO HAS NOW OFFICIALLY missed the boat. He had his shot, but his former lieutenant governor, Kathy Hochul, seems to be where she wants to be. She’s a smart woman and unlike Cuomo, she has not accumulated a lot of enemies and seems set for reelection. It would take more than a few mistakes for her to lose. She does have some things going against her. She comes from the upper, far reaches of the state. If the people of downstate New York were to see her favoring the Buffalo area, they might turn on her. So far, she seems to be playing her cards right and more importantly, who would replace her? No one seems to be making any such moves. I am quite sure that Andrew is plotting a comeback but I really can’t see how he’s going to do it. As I have said over and over, he sure doesn’t seem to have any friends left to help him advance himself.

In the meantime, a lot of people are talking about New York Mayor Eric Adams. He should be the top man in New York’s educational bureaucracy. It makes great sense to have the mayor at the top of the group. One can only wonder what other organization chart would work. It really can’t be any other way. If Adams messes up, he should be held responsible. He’s an interesting man who knows what it’s like to function in a political bureaucracy. Of course, we have to remember that Adams has a long history as a cop. That means he knows how to function in a top to bottom military organization. The man knows how to maintain a position of power and he is not going to let anyone walk over him. Read more…

THE CAPITOL CONNECTION: Hochul passes the friend test

GOVERNOR KATHY HOCHUL was kind enough to join me on my syndicated radio program recently and she showed me another side of her that many people have yet to see. First of all, she has a sense of humor. Who knew? I had written a column urging her to come on to the show and the first words out of her mouth were to say that she “…owed me one” for not having shown up previously. Her choice of staff is illustrative of her character. Once she agreed to participate on the show, they followed up with courtesy and friendliness.

Hochul, the first woman to serve as governor of New York, seems determined not to make any mistakes. Unlike Andrew Cuomo who some think is the prince of darkness, Hochul is determined to make friends, not enemies. If you looked sideways at Cuomo, or even if you didn’t, you might well have had a fight on your hands.

Hochul is one smart human being. Her first instinct is to make you a friend. One instructive instance is how she had carried on with New York City Mayor Eric Adams. Adams is also smart and tough and continues his relationship with former Governor Cuomo. He is equally attentive to Hochul. If things were reversed, you can bet that Andrew would have taken offense at the mayor’s emerging relationship with a political rival. Not Hochul, who seems determined to get along with most political players. After all, she faces a tough primary in which several people are attempting to take her down. When she first emerged as frontrunner, she seemed untouchable. But, as things go in politics, “…that was then, and this is now.” (With thanks to Alfonse D’Amato.) Read more…