New York’s other statewide elected officials–Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli both released statements in the wake of Andrew Cuomo’s first budget address, and they differ in much the way you would expect considering the governor’s history with both men.
Cuomo was a quiet backer of Schneiderman’s primary opponent, Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, before becoming an enthusiastic backer of the candidate in his general election race against Republican Dan Donovan. Cuomo kept his distance from DiNapoli, citing his office’s ongoing pension probe, even though DiNapoli was later cleared of wrongdoing in the investigation.
Today, Schneiderman says he is standing shoulder-to-shoulder with Cuomo’s agenda.
“As the Governor said today, our state is at a time of unprecedented fiscal crisis and balancing the budget requires extraordinarily tough choices. To help close this deficit, our office will leave no stone unturned in rooting out fraud, corruption, and waste in government, so that we can recover more money stolen from the taxpayers and hold accountable individuals who betray the public trust,” Schneiderman says. ”I would like to thank Governor Cuomo for supporting the Attorney General’s Office in our efforts to meet these goals…Governor Cuomo has a lot of hard work ahead of him to get our state back on track, and I look forward to working with him and the legislature to restore the public’s faith in government and in our economic system, to give all New Yorkers a fair shake in these tough times.”
DiNapoli, meanwhile, says not-so-fast, and seems to stand with his Assembly colleagues and their allies in labor–who also helped DiNapoli prevail in a close statewide race–in trying to insure that the new budget it equitable.
“There are two main concerns: achieving budget balance while continuing to provide essential services that millions of New Yorkers rely on,” he says. “My office will be analyzing the specifics of the budget proposal to determine its impact on local governments, school districts and other service providers that depend on state funding.