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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Fresh Face

I'm told by a person with knowledge of the Aqueduct deliberations that the process is now being handled by Tim Gilchrist, described as an experienced, well-regarded, and "apolitical" (if there's such a thing in Albany) program and policy guy. Previously, the matter was being dealt with by Budget Director Robert Megna, Lottery Director Robert J. McLaughlin Gordon Medenica, and the Governor's legal counsel Peter J. Kiernan. I'm informed that Gilchrist is supposed to make a final recommendation to Paterson later this week with an announcement coming next week. I know we've heard that many times before....but I'm thinking that this process is truly about to reach a conclusion.

However, even at this time, aspects of the process remain in flux. I was also told that additional information on equity partners and affiliates in each bid are due at the governor's mansion today. And the local Queens Courier reports that Steve Wynn recently completed a bond issuance some 43% higher than originally planned as a “show of strength [with] cash [and] the ability to raise cash” to sway Paterson, Smith and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver in his direction.

- In some other Albany news, in an obvious blow-off to Governor Paterson, his "popularity" still at a nadir in polls, Senate Democrats scheduled hearings out of town on the day that the governor called for a special session to consider his proposals to close the $3-$4 billion deficit being projected for the current fiscal year. (Paterson has now pushed the session back by one day.)

And you gotta love this....Paterson has delivered a dis of his own, this one to President Obama, in town today for to raise money for the DNC - a $30,400-per-couple dinner at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel at Columbus Circle. [Gothamist] The governor will not attend due to his being "unilaterally focused on this budget issue." Unlike, apparently, the Senate Democrats.

More calls for the resignation of Senator Hiram Monserrate, including, significantly perhaps, from two Latina members of the NY City Council. Senate Democratic Conference Leader John Sampson is expected to announce today a nine-member committee (five Democrats and four Republicans) to consider disciplinary action and possible expulsion.

And finally, last and certainly not least, the repugnant former mayor of New York City was at it again over the weekend, warning voters that their personal safety was at risk should Democratic candidate William Thompson defeat Mayor Bloomberg in November. “You know exactly what I’m talking about,” Giuliani said; and, with the remarks coming as it did in an Orthodox Brooklyn neighborhood, it obviously recalled the racial tensions of the early 90's, which were followed by his own divisive administration. With the Democratic candidate happening to be black, the race-baiting element of his remarks are quite addition to the fear-mongering that has become his M.O. The latest Siena poll shows him closing the gap in a race for governor against Andrew Cuomo, and that's something about which to be very, very afraid.


Anonymous said...

why would you be so afraid, the Spitzer gang was so much better!!

Anonymous said...

Gilchrist is a new 'public" name to this process. I wonder if he was on that Aqueduct bid advisory panel that the Mannatt law firm was doing the legal work for?

Dave Rose from Governor Paterson's office and Bill Murray from the Lottery Commission were the names that I had heard were doing all the heavy lifting on this deal.

Anonymous said...

Governor Giuliani.....has a nice ring, don't you think?

You can always move to Jersey.

Anonymous said...

I tell ya, if it is truly Giuliani v. Cuomo this will be the first general election in a long long time that I can go into the voting booth without holding my nose, voting for the best of two qualified candidates as opposed to the least worst option.

I was thisclose to moving out of the city before Rudy was elected, but he straigtened the city out and everyone is better off for it. The oft quoted racial divide was in place long before his election, he inherited that mess like Obama inheritied Iraq.

Whatever you think of his personal views his governance saved the city and is exactly what is needed in Albany.

El Angelo said...

Guiliani is pro-choice, pro-gay rights, divorced, had a marriage annulled because he married his cousin, cross-dresses in public, is profane, and is disrespectful. I wonder how that will play out in the more socially conservative areas of New York.

Anonymous said...

It will be interesting to see how he does upstate, but Rudy is facing little competition in the primary.

In the general election, he would be running against Cuomo, who is also pro choice and pro gay rights, and if upstate NY'ers held being profane and disrepectful againtst their candidates there would be a lot of empty seats in Albany.

It would be an interesting tight race, and like I said I prefer either guy to the empty suits that have held the office for way too long.

Anonymous said...

Alan, rather see Rudy in the White House instead of the damn fool who now occupies the place. Can we be rid of Obama soon enough, before the country is flat-assed broke? I think the Clintons are licking their chops at the chance of a re-match against this puppet on Soros' string. /S/greenmtnpunter