Occupy Albany got evicted, the taxi bill got a reprieve, Anthony Weiner got a wonderful Hanukkah gift and Carl Kruger got his pension before getting teary-eyed in court. Here’s our weekly look at who’s up and who’s down in New York politics. —
Anthony Weiner - The former Congressman didn’t exactly have a great year, but at least it’s ending on a high note thanks to the birth of his first child, a son named Jordan Zain Weiner. With the news came the crude jokes playing on the baby’s last name and continued speculation about whether the pregnancy played a role in the decision by Weiner’s wife, Huma Abedin, to stick around after the sexting scandal that cost him his job. But even with all the sleepless nights taking care of the baby in his immediate future, Weiner has to be feeling good again.
Andrew Cuomo – Not satisfied with the slew of policy accomplishments he has under his belt for the year, the governor squeezed in one more before 2011 officially bit the dust. The taxi deal agreed upon between himself and Mayor Michael Bloomberg was a big win for both men, but maybe more for Cuomo, who pressured the city to give his administration the final sign-off on the sale of thousands of new taxi medallions. No one has shown more skill at bending the city’s will to the state than Andrew “I am the government” Cuomo. And voters are impressed, telling pollsters they aren’t quite sure what to make of Cuomo’s tax code overhaul, but either way, they love their guv.
John Sampson - The state Senate minority leader took another hit over his questionable pick for the new state ethics commission, Ravi Batra, when it was revealed that the two had an undisclosed business connection. Soon after, the guilty plea by Sen. Carl Kruger once again tarnished Sampson’s Democratic caucus. And now, Sampson’s Republican adversaries are feeling energized as they prepare to mount a strong campaign to steal Kruger’s old seat.
Carl Kruger - He wasn’t the first New York pol to resign in disgrace, but the senator’s admission of guilt was unusually odd and undoubtedly painful. Kruger broke down and cried in the courtroom, and the private details of his relationship with co-defendant Michael Turano – the two spoke to each other using baby talk – was exposed to the public at large. At least he’ll keep his pension for now, and perhaps the mansion and other assets that he reportedly registered under others’ names.