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Governor Andrew Cuomo beginning to sound and look good

April 6, 2010

Marcelo Lucero

Whether  or not you are  a fan of gubernatorial hopeful Andrew Cuomo, NYS Attorney General,  he’s beginning to look better than the other candidates for governor of New York State .

In hindsight the withdrawal of Cuomo back in 2002 from challenging H. Carl McCall, the African-American gubernatorial candidate against George Pataki served him well now as he amended  with party leaders both white and black who saw him as a spoiler at the time.

Still  the ongoing investigation  of Governor Paterson earlier  ruffled a few feathers  for Cuomo because it presented a conflict of interest   as a hopeful himself for the office of governor of  the State. But he withdrew finally appointing an Independent Counsel though criticized for choosing  Judge Judith Kaye his father former Governor Mario Cuomo nominated to  the bench  while the  group  End Discrimination Now issued a call for her resignation.

Other than this incident, it seems he is the hopeful candidate more likely to appeal to  most African-Americans and Latinos since at this juncture no one from these communities announced an interest in running in the Democratic or Republican parties.

So the question is whose Cuomo’s running mate–for the Lt. Governor  Charlie King again as in 2002, Leecia Eve  who Elliot Spitzer and the Harlem African-American politicians supported  than snubbed and abandoned her in 2006 or a Latino preferably from upstate New York either Western or Central Region to balance the ticket?

And Cuomo is certainly, more  politically correct  than the Buffalo attorney and developer Carl Paladino and  Steve Levy,  Suffolk County  executive. Yet the Conservative Party  endorsed former Representative  Rick A. Lazio , a necessary support to win a state-wide race in the past elections. Lazio  has not campaigned in ten years with barely over $500, 000 in his campaign chest in January.

The Lazio team released prominent  Republicans names associated with the campaign including former Mayor Rudolph W. Guiliani and George E. Pataki serving as honorary co-chairs.But where is the money coming from in such little time for Lazio who has made thousands working for the banking industry but has not pledge similar amount of his own money as Paladino?

Paladino and Levy have more in common  as the former bashes African-Americans and Jewish leaders mercilessly  as in the case of Mayor Brown,  Senator Antoine Thompson and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver  while the latter  at immigrants.  Levy actually carried out raids of Latino immigrants homes allegedly created an atmosphere of hostility that might have contributed to the bigoted and racist environment that caused the death of an Ecuadorian Marcelo Lucero from  the Suffolk County village of Patchogue with a  population 12,194.  He  used derisive terms such as  “anchor babies” to describe foreign or Latina women who give birth here and allegedly been unapologetic about it as anti-immigrant groups used the word too.

A white teenager plunged a knife into  Lucero’s chest after going out with six other  mostly white youths to  play the  ” Mexican hopping,” “bean hopping” or “border patrol’ game, to intimidate, harass and beat  Latino men on Nov. 8, 2008. And a day earlier one used a bird shot-gun to shoot at a Latino immigrant knocking off  and taking his baseball cap as his trophy.

And the Southern Poverty Law Center, a nonprofit Alabama-based organization that tracks hate groups issued a report in 2009 about racial intolerance in Suffolk County, according  to a NYTimes article.

Mark Potok, Director of the Center has said that “… the idea that Latino immigrants were somehow disposable people was in the atmosphere in Suffolk County and very much sunk into these kids’ brains.” And a NYTimes editorial  described Levy’s …”strategy of trying to make life untenable for Long Islanders he presumes to be illegal is divisive and ineffective. His reaction to tragedies like the killing of the Ecuadorean immigrant Marcelo Lucero has been heartless and dismissive.”

Hearings in the case continue in Riverhead court in Long Island with a jury of twelve with only one black and hispanic. The case is a bizarre one because one of the youth involved is African-American and Puerto Rican and Jeffrey  Conroy, the white youth, now 19-years-old, accused of the murder has a girlfriend who is Bolivian. Latinos in Long Island and around the country are  closely watching this case  awaiting a verdict.

Levy has 4.1 million dollars and Paladino volunteered $10 million of his own personal money so together they bring to the race $14. 1 million dollars still two million less than Cuomo whose  campaign chest is over $16 million.

So, Republicans with few dollars to put into the local state race with the only viable candidate short on cash and time to raise it, things look pretty good for Andrew Cuomo.

A. Cuomo, C. Paladino, S. Levy, R. Lazio

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