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Erie County GOP video slams Cuomo comments

   By Robert J. McCarthy

   The Erie County Republican Committee Monday released a paid web advertisement that joined the criticism of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s recent comments indicating  "extremist" conservatives "have no place in the State of New York."

    The video, recounts Cuomo’s interview and features rebuttals from Erie County residents unhappy with the governor's remarks, according to Erie County Republican Chairman Nicholas A. Langworthy.

     "Andrew Cuomo was unambiguous in his message to more than a third of New Yorkers, and even more Erie County residents: leave town,"  Langworthy said. "This video is just a sample of the many Western New Yorkers who contacted the Republican Party to express their anger about his comments."

   The chairman also noted the "clumsy dance" Cuomo's aides have performed "trying to rewind their boss's very clear message."

    "There's no denying that Cuomo invited any New Yorker who doesn't back his radical agenda to leave the state," Langworthy said. "Generations of New York Catholics and maybe your doctor, your lawyer, your neighbor -- somehow the governor of New York thinks we should all pack our bags. This is even more proof Cuomo is out of touch and must be defeated in November."

   The video is available at  <




More than 500 tickets sold for GOP fundraiser featuring Trump

   By Robert J. McCarthy

   Whether or not billionaire Donald J. Trump runs for governor this year, Erie County Republicans sure are glad he's thinking about it.

   Two GOP sources with knowledge of the situation say Trump's scheduled appearance at a county organization fun raiser on Friday is a sellout -- with at least 500 tickets sold for the event at Salvatore's Italian Gardens in Lancaster. One observer thought it will rank as the most successful Lincoln Day fund raiser in local history.

   The sources, meanwhile, said the Manhattan real estate mogul continues this week reaching out to key Republican chairmen around the state to build support for clearing the field of competition before making a final decision on challenging Democratic incumbent Andrew M. Cuomo.

   Most Republicans involved in the process believe that decision will be made by mid-February.


Monday's must-reads from Washington

By Jerry Zremski

WASHINGTON -- I was too busy writing last week to do much reading, but I am back at it now, and back in business on my must-reads.

Topping today's list on the eve of President Barack Obama's State of the Union address, The Los Angeles Times notes that nothing much usually comes of these speeches.

Meanwhile, The New York Times reports that the 2014 elections are likely to result in the status quo.

And The Washington Post tells the story of the U.S. military brass behaving badly.

Paladino on Trump: "I see good things coming"

By Tom Precious

COLONIE -- Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino told a state Conservative Party gathering today he believes billionaire Donald Trump is serious about running for governor.
"I feel very solidly we're going to hear good things from Donald Trump,'' Paladino told an audience of Conservative Party leaders at a hotel here outside Albany.
Trump said he had dinner with Trump last week. "I had one question: are you taking advantange of us or are you serious?'' Paladino said he asked Trump.
Paladino said Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been "sending out emmisaries" to try to convince Trump not to challenge him this fall. "I see good things coming,'' Paladino said of Trump.

Grant to announce challenge to Kennedy next week

  By Robert J. McCarthy

   Betty Jean Grant, the County Legislature minority leader who narrowly lost a primary election to State Sen. Timothy M. Kennedy in 2012, said Friday she expects to announce another Democratic challenge to the sitting senator some time next week.

   Grant has been widely expected to reprise her 2012 effort, which she lost by only 156 votes. She did not say what day she plans to make it official, but hinted it would be by the weekend of Feb. 1-2 at the latest.

   Former State Sen. Antoine M. Thompson, D-Buffalo, also is considering a comeback bid against Kennedy.

Video: Cuomo's comments on "extremists" spurs controversy

Gov. Cuomo's recent statement that "extremist conservatives" have no place in New York is making national waves. News Political Reporter Bob McCarthy talks with Brian Meyer about the comment's possible impact on the governor's race:


Cuomo rakes in $600,000 at glitzy LA fund raiser

   By Robert J. McCarthy

   The Hollywood Reporter described the fund raising event featuring big time movie executives staged in Los Angeles Thursday evening as "high wattage."
   And there is no doubt the governor's campaign fund managers will describe the result as "big bucks."
   The California entertainment industry publication reports today that Cuomo raised about $600,000 at the event, held at the home of Fox Film Chairman Jim Gianopulos. It said Cuomo addressed about 150 people - who paid between $5,000 and $25,000 to attend - from a lectern in the host's back yard.
   The Reporter also said Cuomo touted programs he said have made New York a lucrative location for movie filming, and that he hoped to do more to lure film companies to his state. In addition, the publication said he criticized former Gov. Eliot L. Spitzer for creating conditions Cuomo inherited.
   According to an invitation to the event, the host committee included Motion Picture Association of American boss Chris Dodd and movie mogul Steven Spielberg.
   G. Steven Pigeon, the former Erie County Democratic chairman and political consultant who is close to Cuomo, was also slated to attend the affair along with several West Coast clients.
   Proceeds from the event will add to the $33 million campaign treasury the governor reported earlier this month as he heads into an election year.

The governor's schedule for today, or yesterday, has not been released by his office so it is uncertain if he is still in California, heading home or already back in New York. His office has also declined to say if he took commercial service to California or used a private jet provided by a campaign supporter, a route Cuomo often selects when attending fundraisers.


Cuomo: California dreamin' on such a winter's day

By Tom Precious

ALBANY -- The governor is off in California today for tonight's big fundraiser -- couples are being asked to give up to $50,000 apiece -- at the Los Angeles home of Fox Film Entertainment Chairman Jim Gianopulos. The event is being hosted by an array of Hollywood insiders, whose companies have benefited from film tax breaks by New York state that have been increased for productions made in the state.

The governor's office did not, as usual, put out a schedule for the day showing where Cuomo would be located. The governor's office also is not saying how the governor traveled to California; he often is given an "in-kind'' donation to his campaign of a free flight on a private jet by a donor.

In the interests of transparency, we bring you weather information for Los Angeles as of 1:45 PST: 68 degrees and, naturally, sunny.

Transcript: Cuomo's full answer when referencing 'extreme conservatives'

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's comments Friday about extreme conservatives having no place in New York have generated a lot of interest over the last week.

Buffalo Bishop Richard Malone on Wednesday called the comments by Cuomo “the best example of extremism I’ve heard for a long time.”

Continue reading "Transcript: Cuomo's full answer when referencing 'extreme conservatives'" »

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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.

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.

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 |

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 |