News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics
Cuomo gives unofficial shout-out to non-endorsed DiNapoli
Standing on the back of a 30-foot flatbed truck festooned with his name and face, Andrew Cuomo ran through his closing pitch high atop the corner of W. 72nd St. and Broadway.
“We are going to stand up and we are going to say, ‘You can’t divide us. You don’t know who we are as a people and you don’t know what kind of state we are if you thought you could,’” he said. “We celebrate our diversity. Yes we are gay new Yorkers and we are straight New Yorkers and we celebrate the fact that we are diverse. Yes we are black and white and brown. Yes, we are upstate and downstate, we celebrate our diversity. You’re not going to pull us apart and you are not going to divide us. We are one state and we are one people and you are not going to divide us.”
He followed that with the standard-issue laundry list of shout-outs to fellow Democrats, but with a twist: the inclusion of the non-endorsed comptroller, Tom DiNapoli.
“Are we going to elect a new dream team in Albany? Are we going to make Eric Schneiderman the next attorney general? Are we going to make Tom DiNapoli the next comptroller? All right, are we ready? Are we ready? Lets go do it on Tuesday!”
But alas, there would be no kumbaya with Cuomo and DiNapoli, who was not invited to join the Cuomo campaign truck either on the Upper West Side or the Bronx, despite campaigning nearby in Washington Heights.
“I’m officially neutral in that race,” Cuomo said when asked about a potential change of heart. “I’ll leave it at that.”
Asked later if the shout-out construed an endorsement, Cuomo said: "I mentioned a lot of candidates in that speech."
While Cuomo spoke to adoring crowds from on high, DiNapoli was left to forage through Halloween throngs on St. Nicholas Avenue at W. 181st St. with Rep. Charles Rangel (D-Manhattan) and the local Assembly and state Senate candidates.
DiNapoli, trailed by a man shouting exhortations for him into a megaphone in Spanish, shrugged off questions about why he wasn’t stumping alongside the top of the Democratic ticket.
“I am very proud to be nominated by the Democratic Party, to have support all across this state and the voters are going to put me,” he said while surrounded by all manner of pint-sized goblins. “Happy Halloween, kids!”
Cuomo did not mention DiNapoli’s name the second time he stood atop the campaign truck, on Fordham Avenue in the Bronx. He repeated that he’s “officially neutral” and left it to Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. to tout the incumbent Democratic comptroller.
“Just because he’s not here,” Diaz Jr. said, “doesn’t mean that Tom DiNapoli isn’t benefiting from the energetic base here in the Bronx.”