• 10.06.15

    Charisma vs. Competence: The D.A. Races in Nassau and Staten Island

    There are two very intriguing district attorney races on the ballot this November, in Nassau County and Staten Island, which are not getting the attention they deserve. Both races present voters with the same clear choice: Do they want political potential from candidates they know, or ...

  • 05.31.15

    Protect the Vital Center

    Last week brought a report from Fred Dicker in the New York Post that the well-funded anti-abortion Chiaroscuro Foundation was contemplating fomenting primaries against incumbent Republican state Senators on Long Island. This mirrored earlier rumors of Tea Party primaries next year against ...

  • 05.14.15

    Flanagan's Win Maps Road to Success for LI Candidates

    Long Island cast a collective sigh this week, when John Flanagan was elected State Senate majority leader. The region feared it would lose a key leadership position in Albany to an upstate lawmaker.Flanagan (R-East Northport) no doubt remembered the painful lessons of 2002, when he lost by a ...

  • 03.25.15

    Budget-Making Is Political Theater in Albany

    Budgets in Albany, as in Julius Caesar's Gaul, are divided into thirds: hard dollars and cents, policy wrangling and political theater. Budgets are wrapped up only when all three elements are in alignment and when all three sides -- the governor, the Senate and the Assembly -- feel they can ...

  • 12.07.14

    Climate Change Will Make More Politicians Into Environmentalists

    By the time the 2016 presidential election formally gets underway, pundits are likely to debate the climate change gap in the same breath as they argue over the gender gap.Voters already have telegraphed elected officials that they need to take global warming seriously, because they do. Or face the ...

  • 10.31.14

    Who Is Heading To The Polls?

    I am often asked why the likely voter polling data, especially in New York State, has been consistently off target on the margin of victory over the last decade and a half. My response is always the same: The polling data itself is not usually the problem, it is the likely voter screens that are ...

  • 10.17.14

    Governor Races Are Key to 2016 Election

    In terms of governing, the battle for partisan control of the United States Senate is the most important political contest on this year's ballot. But for those trying to read the tea leaves for early signs of advantage heading into the 2016 presidential contest, the governors' races will be the ...

  • 10.01.14

    A Clash for Control of the Senate

    The battle for control of the State Senate is fully underway.Normally, three to five Senate seats are swing seats in an election cycle in New York -- meaning they can be won by Democrats or Republicans. This year, however, eight to nine seats fit that description: three and perhaps four on Long ...

  • 09.16.14

    Six Lessons From Last Week's Primary

    Now that the dust is settling on the pundits' snap takeaways from last week's gubernatorial primary, let's focus on what I like to call the "carry forwards". I see six factors emerging from the primary that will impact November's election and the next governor's term.

  • 09.04.14

    Put Bank Penalties To Work For New York

    It's rare that the imperatives of good policy so easily meld with political viability. But the stars are beginning to align on a statewide infrastructure plan.We learned in July that New York State would get $3.3 billion from the sanctions imposed on the French bank BNP Paribas. By late last month, ...

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