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What Would Cuomo Wu? - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
A Møøse once bit my sister ...
What Would Cuomo Wu?
I'm spending my early Labor Day in retail, buying the bare essentials: socks and briefs.


Eleanor's got ribs planned for later, so that's a cookout, but otherwise, after the crazies of the past and coming week, no other traditional holiday Things here. Particularly, no parades, for which today is the last major US political holiday before the mid-term elections.

(Yes, Columbus Day is in a month, but that occasion is so divisive these days that there isn't the same level of candidate action.)

We have no US Senate races here this time, and our local Congressional delegation is gerrymandered into near-certain outcomes, so that leaves the statewide races producing the most interest. Our incumbent Guv, Andrew Cuomo, leads his GOP opponent by wide double digits, but the intrigue is coming from his own major party primary a week from tomorrow.

Cuomo's only serious Democratic opponent is named Zephyr Teachout. (Oh, you 60s communes;). She's a downstate law professor and a way-left progressive. The incumbent's strategies to deal with her heresy have been, in order, (a) try to get her knocked off the ballot (he failed), and, since then, (b) ignore her. No debates. No responses to her near-daily attacks on his one-percent ness. He has tried not even to mention her by name in his many photo-op, act-all-Guv-vy, appearances. But she's gaining. Probably not enough to win, but enough to embarrass.

Because Andrew Cuomo, like Father Mario 30 years ago, has Presidential ambitions, and to maintain cred, he can't just win. He must crush. Destroy. Exterminate! (Sorry- it sticks with you.) And it must therefore bug him that the major state editorial voice, The New York Times, refused to endorse either him or Teachout late last month. They considered her too inexperienced, but they raised major issues about his ethics and fundraising priorities.

But he'll still win, primarily BECAUSE of his questionable ethics and fundraising.

So for the real intrigue, we move down ballot, a Hochul of a contest between two people Wu you've never heard of.


Unlike White House contests in this country, where the Prez nominee picks a running mate and they are nominated and put to the voters together, New York does it weirdly. Candidates name a putative running mate for Lieutenant Governor, but on Primary Day, each is voted for separately. Cuomo picked a vanilla and geo-balancing Loo-Guv mate from near here: Kathy Hochul. A former county official and Congresswoman, she was gerrymandered out of a job in 2012 and this is her return to politics.

Zeph went with a nearby-to-her law prof named Timothy Wu, whose biggest claim to fame before this was for coining the term "net neutrality," though few knew that until now. He's also Asian-American, which would be totally irrelevant except for there being a markedly high voter turnout in Asian-American census tracts in past Dem primaries.

Also? The Times endorsed him over Hochul, because inexperience doesn't matter as much in what is largely a do-nothing job.

So HE could win, producing a shotgun-wedding Dem ticket that will piss off the Guv to no end.

I love it. And even though I like Kathy, and have always voted for her when I could (hell, her husband sat next to me for much of law school), Wu's getting my vote- just to let Cuomo know he can't push us around 24/7/365.

The same thing happened to Cuomo pere the first time HE ran for Guv in 1982. His primary opponent was much better-known: NYC Mayor Ed "How'm I doing?" Koch. Koch was the favorite, but right before the primary, he stuck his foot in his mouth with upstate voters, making references to us wearing gingham dresses and buying our suits at Sears. (To hell with you, Ed; I LIKEs me my gingham dresses, although I refuse to wear them after Labor Day.)  But none of that scandal tarnished Koch's running mate, the then executive of Westchester County, and in our bizarre electoral scheme, HE wound up fused to Mario Cuomo for the general election. I know his name, but you never saw it in the ensuing two months, and while Cuomo-Voldemort won handily that fall, the Guv retaliated by ostracizing his "running mate," speaking to him barely if at all for over a year, and the guy finally resigned out of utter boredom.

Wu won't.  He's already announced that he will be a progressive thorn in the Guv's side, and won't hesitate to act with the full powers of the office any time Cuomo leaves the state, which you kinda have to do if you're running for President.  It would be absolutely delicious to watch.

And even though there likely won't be an official CUOMO-WU yard sign if it happens, I'm going to make my own, just to make clear that elections matter more than donations.
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