Spin Cycle

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics

Oooh, scary! Five eerie, election-related Halloween frights

Falling so close to Election Day, Halloween offers the perfect time for a political scare.

For voters in the dark, here are five basic fright-night features of which to beware:

1 Spirits and ghosts of elections past rise to haunt the airwaves with endorsements.

Former President Bill Clinton appeared Thursday, as he has before, in support of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Former New York...

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Effort relaunched to monitor, record problems at LI, NYC polling sites

Nonprofit groups are promoting the relaunch of a Web app they say is aimed at helping Long Islanders and New York City residents report poll problems on Election Day, which is Tuesday.

The app, called PollWatchUSA, which went into operation in 2012, is described as a crowd-sourcing tool (Web talk for taking information and other content from a large number of people).

Common Cause, the...

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3rd S.D.: Candidates trade exploitation charges

Adrienne Esposito and Tom Croci, the candidates in the 3rd State Senate District in Suffolk County, are accusing each other of exploiting breast cancer.

Mailers by the New York Senate Republican Committee accused Democratic candidate Adrienne Esposito of having sought to use breast cancer to fundraise for an environmental group in 1993. Esposito countered that her opponent, Republican Islip...

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AG race continues to heat as debate nears

ALBANY — In a preview of Thursday night’s only TV debate in the attorney general race, Democrat Eric Schneiderman and Republican John Cahill hammered away at their opponent’s records on taxes.

Schneiderman, the attorney general from Manhattan, questioned Cahill’s role as a member of the board of directors of a company based in Ireland and Bermuda. American companies have moved to those tax...

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Dems pressure own voters, say turnout will be monitored

The New York State Democratic Party, apparently concerned about a lack of enthusiasm for next week's election, is telling members that unnamed organizations are monitoring their neighborhood turnout, the Associated Press reported.

 The party sent letters to enrolled Democrats saying it will review voting records to see if the recipient cast a ballot. If they don't, the party writes that...

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Take my candidate … please. Comedians get in the action in A.D. 20

Oy vey.

First comedy legend Mel Brooks endorsed his great-nephew Todd Kaminsky, a Democrat running for State Assembly in the 20th District.

Now Kaminsky’s Republican opponent, Avi Fertig, jokingly suggests that he is seeking the endorsements of Borscht Belt mainstays Jackie Mason, Mal Z. Lawrence and Fyvush Finkel.

“Todd’s a member of the lucky gene pool, I guess,” Fertig said....

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Top court keeps Libertarian in Senate race, dismisses Marcellino challenge

New York’s top court has allowed Libertarian candidate Georgina Bowman stay on the ballot to challenge Sen. Carl Marcellino (R-Syosset) and Democrat Bruce Kennedy in a district that straddles Nassau and Suffolk counties.

The Court of Appeals on Thursday declined to hear a case, brought by Marcellino allies, that attempted to disqualify Bowman. In doing so, the top court let stand a mid-court...

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Left, right courting massive teacher vote against Cuomo

ALBANY -- Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins said Thursday that he’s trying to rally the potentially massive teacher vote after Democratic Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s criticism of the public education system.

As Hawkins seeks to attract the teacher vote from the left, Republican Rob Astorino is trying to draw teachers with his “Stop Common Core” ballot line. Astorino promises to stop the federal...

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Teachers' union fires back at Cuomo, praises Astorino

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on October 28, 2014

(Credit: Getty Images / Larry Busacca)

One of the state’s largest unions has accused Democrat Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of disrespecting “teachers, parents” and school boards for calling public schools a “monopoly.”

The quarrel between the New York State United Teachers and Cuomo -- and Republican candidate Rob Astorino’s attempt to capitalize on it -- is a late twist in a gubernatorial contest just days away. And it creates the unusual...

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GOP’s Moss tells fellow African Americans: Cuomo blocked black candidates (Updates)

Chris Moss accepts the nomination for Republican candidate

(Credit: Jeremy Bales)

(Updates with comment from Gov. Paterson)

ALBANY -- Republican candidate for lieutenant governor Chris Moss struck back at claims of racism aimed at his running mate by telling fellow African Americans that Andrew M. Cuomo has stood in the way of black candidates.

“I would say to fellow African Americans ... remember it’s Andrew Cuomo who screwed up Carl McCall’s run for governor and...

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