Spin Cycle

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

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Paul LaRocco

Paul LaRocco joined Newsday in November 2010, covering the Town of Oyster Bay, City of Glen Cove and the nearby incorporated villages. In the fall of 2011, he began writing about Suffolk County government and politics. Before coming to Newsday, LaRocco worked as a reporter at The Press-Enterprise in Riverside, Calif., and The Record-Journal in Meriden, Conn.

NY State Senate scrum: 8 seats in play, maybe more later

At least eight State Senate seats are considered “in play” for determining control of the chamber next year, though more could be added to the list as the campaigns develop.

Five of those seats are currently controlled by Republicans, three by Democrats.The GOP must defend three on Long Island, one in the Hudson Valley, and one in Buffalo.

Democrats must defend freshman incumbents in...

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Babylon: Amid town Dem $ storm, IDA chair Halpin asks fiscal review

Babylon Industrial Development Agency chairman Patrick Halpin says that he has asked the agency’s fiscal officials to provide board members with a review of its books in light of questions over IDA chief executive officer Robert Stricoff’s handling of Babylon Democratic finances.

Halpin said he has no indication there are any problems and the agency’s top fiscal official Kathy Harris has assured...

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Teachers' local leader wants AFT dues cut off for pro-Cuomo calls

Connetquot teacher union president Tony Felicio Jr. wants to cut off paying $132,000 in dues to the American Federation of Teachers after the national group’s president Randy Weingarten did robo calls for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s running mate Kathy Hochul before Tuesday’s primary.

“We no longer want any of our hard earned dollars/dues going to an organization (AFT) whose leader so blatantly undermined...

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1st C.D.: House Speaker to attend Zeldin fundraiser

Republican Lee Zeldin is still chasing Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton) in the money race in the 1st Congressional District on Long Island's East End, and House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is coming to Long Island to help.

Boehner will be the main draw at an afternoon reception in Bridgehampton on Saturday, Sept. 20, according to a NY GOP email sent out today.

Zeldin's predecessor as...

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Wu endorses Democratic ticket after primary loss

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Zephyr Teachout and her running

(Credit: AP / Seth Wenig)

ALBANY — Democrat Tim Wu, who lost Tuesday’s primary for lieutenant governor, is endorsing the Democratic ticket headed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and his running mate, Kathy Hochul.

“We’re trying to protect the integrity of the primary purposes, that means the losers have to respect the result of the primary process,” Wu said in an interview Thursday.

Wu, a Columbia University law professor...

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Re-election losses are rare in NY gubernatorial contests

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo speaks to hotel workers

(Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Burton)

Besides financial and enrollment advantages, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has history on his side in this year’s campaign.

New York governors rarely lose re-election bids. Especially his first run for re-election.

Cuomo’s father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo, famously lost re-election in 1994. But he was running for a fourth term in office.

Let's also set aside Malcolm Wilson in 1974 because...

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Sen. Martins releases first TV ad of campaign featuring his family

State Sen. Jack Martins receives endorsements from multiple

(Credit: Howard Schnapp)

State Sen. Jack Martins (R-Mineola), who has been criticized by his Democratic opponent for his stance on women’s issues, has released the first television ad of his re-election campaign -- a spot focused on equal pay for women.

Martins, who is serving his second term, faces Democratic businessman Adam Haber in November.

The 30-second commercial, which will run throughout the campaign,...

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Senate candidate Irwin announces plan to support vets

Ethan Irwin, Democratic candidate for New York State

(Credit: James Escher)

Ethan Irwin, the Democratic candidate in Nassau's 6th State Senate District and a former Marine from Levittown, has released a plan to assist New York veterans that relies on tax exemptions, educational programs and hiring incentives

Irwin is challenging Sen. Kemp Hannon (R-Garden City) in November.

“It is unacceptable that New York allows its veterans to struggle upon returning home...

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C.D.4: DiNapoli endorses Rice as she unveils tax-relief plan

Democrat Kathleen Rice, who is running against Republican Bruce Blakeman for New York’s 4th Congressional District seat, received the endorsement of state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli on Wednesday as she unveiled a series of tax-relief proposals.

DiNapoli, a Democrat from Great Neck Plaza, said in a statement that Rice, who serves as Nassau district attorney, “has proven to be an effective...

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Suffolk Leg.'s maiden webcast voyage runs aground

The Suffolk County Legislature's first foray into webcasting  its meetings flopped Tuesday as, officials said, many more people than expected tried to watch the proceedings.

Those pulling up the livestream on the county's website could watch a few seconds of deliberations from Hauppauge before the video froze.

"There were bandwidth...

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