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The politics of Albany will never be the same again, especially with the entrance into the gubernatorial race by state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. He is poised to help salvage Albany from political inaction and legislative stalemate never before witnessed in the Empire State.
His announcement could not have come at a better time. For one, the state is grappling with about a $9.2 billion budget shortfall and the state Legislature is mired in confrontation politics — add to this the disequilibrium brought by the inability of legislators to acquiesce to the demands of Gov. David Paterson. All that and more call for help and it finally arrived in Andrew Cuomo.
If elected, he will bring an ambitious agenda and a different kind of politics. Andrew Cuomo, as former secretary of the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department during the Clinton administration, is erudite and fearless and comes across like a progressive populist. His politics will not mirror the lip-service style of his predecessors. Perhaps the only similarity with former Gov. Elliot Spitzer is that both went from attorney general to governor.
One positive I see is his eagerness to reach out to the other side of the aisle. A new generation of leaders is embracing politics and humanism. Politics is essentially how resources are allocated for the good of communities and people. Some member items have been disbursed without any sense of fairness. This political inappropriateness is one dysfunction Andrew Cuomo will have to address if he wants to change business as usual. Anyone who understands that former Gov. Mario Cuomo has an incredible wealth of political experience under his belt know those experiences will rub off on Andrew Cuomo.
There is no reason why Andrew Cuomo will not be successful this time around. He remains a calculating genius of a politician. I believe he is equal to the task facing Albany and certainly destined for political immortality. Those who may think that a son of Andrew Cuomo’s ilk will fall into the pattern of predecessors better think again.
What we Democrats, Independence Party members and Republicans need to do is join hands to help restore confidence in our government. It is easy to play the blame game and point accusing fingers. Yes, some of our legislators have disappointed and need to be recalled. What we need is as former President John F. Kennedy put it: “We need men who can dream of things that never were.”
Andrew Cuomo is that man.
©2010 Community Newspaper Group
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