mead cohen berger shevtsova garfinkle michta grygiel blankenhorn
Fixing the Schools
Cuomo and de Blasio Square Off Over Pre-K Funding

A major fault line is opening up between New York’s most powerful Democrats. Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio are at loggerheads over funding prekindergarten classes. In his budget released Tuesday Governor Cuomo offered up $1.5 billion to expand prekindergarten programs, which is likely to be seen as an attempt to outmaneuver Mayor de Blasio, who said on Tuesday that he would still seek to tax the rich to pay for the programs. The New York Times took a look at what early childhood education reform means for the tension between Cuomo and de Blasio:

Mr. Cuomo, a centrist accustomed to governing by the art of the possible, is confronting a new challenge in the form of Mr. de Blasio, a staunch liberal who has channeled the impatience of a national left fed up with leaders who trade ideology for compromise.

The mayor electrified liberals with his campaign promise to provide prekindergarten classes in New York City by raising taxes on wealthy residents. The governor, facing re-election in the fall, has repeatedly pledged to reduce taxes this year.

There are forces in American politics that keep any party from establishing a permanent majority and they are at work now among Democrats. The Democratic party’s left wing, utterly unelectable on a national basis, is sick and tired of playing second fiddle to the centrists. There are leftist Democrats all over America, Mayor de Blasio and Senator Elizabeth Warren among them, who feel in their bones that their hour has come and  that surely the electorate is ready for serious progressive politics.

Well it isn’t. Governor Cuomo would crush Mayor de Blasio in a statewide race, and that is in the deeply blue state of New York. But if the leftists pull the Democrats far enough to port, the GOP will have a major opening in 2016.

Features Icon
show comments
  • EC

    Your last two paragraphs are unfounded editorializing, as far as I can tell.

  • free_agent

    Mmmmm… For the last decade or so, the serious Right has dominated Republican politics, and that worked out so well. (<– irony) Maybe if the Democrats let their ideologues run the party it will turn out better. (<– irony)

  • S.C. Schwarz

    If only you are right…

    It’s interesting to see DeBlasio squirm on this one. The left always tries to say it’s not about class warfare but here Cuomo calls DeBlasio’s bluff and offers to fund the project that is supposedly the reason for the new taxes and DeBlasio refuses. The taxes are the point. The point is exactly to punish those nasty rich people to make the left feel good. The fact that those same rich people pay for more or less everything in NYC is conveniently overlooked.

  • eoros

    The Democratic party’s left wing, utterly unelectable on a national basis??????????? Barack Obama has been elected twice! He most certainly represents the extreme left wing. He might have played centrist the first time around but second time it was all leftist with a record to boot. Any thinking person could see that.

  • AnnSaltzafrazz

    Cuomo knows that if the wealthy run for the hills to escape NY city, they will also leave NY state.

© The American Interest LLC 2005-2016 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service