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Cuomo: Silver should stay as Speaker

By Tom Precious

ALBANY – When Andrew Cuomo in late 2010 was preparing to take office as governor, one of the questions swirling about Albany at the time was this: When will he try to take out Sheldon Silver as Assembly speaker?

The theory, of course, was that Silver and Cuomo did not get along and would never get along.

But in the past week, Cuomo has been the state’s top government official to beat back calls that Silver should resign following revelations of how he secretly handled sexual harassment accusations brought by female employees of now-former Assemblyman Vito Lopez.

"People say the speaker should resign. … I said, I don’t," Cuomo told reporters today. Cuomo repeated what Silver himself has said, which is that the Assembly leader made mistakes in how he handled the Lopez episode last year. And Cuomo said, again, how governors do not have a direct say in Assembly leadership decisions.

"The Assembly will decide who is the leader of the Assembly. They vote. I don’t vote," Cuomo said.

Cuomo's defense of Silver shows how the relationship between the two men has evolved over the years. Moreover, it shows a basic understanding by Cuomo that a leadership battle at this point in the waning weeks of the 2013 legislative session could result in a political bloodbath in the Assembly. Such a battle  would all but halt work on any number of initiatives Cuomo is trying to resolve before the June 20 scheduled session end date. 

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Andrew Cuomo
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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

[email protected]


Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

[email protected]


Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri | [email protected]


Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski | [email protected]

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