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So far, policy clashes between Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio seem to suit the public-relations goals of both. De Blasio pursues his campaign vows by pushing a pre-K tax on top earners and a higher minimum wage for the city while curbing charter schools. By resisting these, fellow Democrat Cuomo -- whose only serious election challenge would come from a Republican -- takes the opportunity to warn about adding taxes and express concern about business and "school choice."
Of course, if it becomes a competition that undermines Cuomo, perhaps by delaying settlement of the state budget, then all "friendly" bets are off and the stakes of the rivalry mount.