From the Archive

Cuomo’s State of the State

January 5th, 2012 at 11:42 pm ET

Andrew CuomoI’m reading the detailed press release about Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address, and I have to say I’m impressed. (No, I’m not watching the video; who the hell has time for that? but you can, if you want, here.) I was prepared to be impressed, based on the buzz, but I’m quite a bit more impressed than I expected.

The guy has turned out to be a better communicator than I expected, a better political operator than I expected (hello! gay marriage in New York!), and a much more committed progressive than I expected. I suppose the latter should have been expected — he was quite progressive at HUD — but after a few years in the governor’s office (or “on the second floor in Albany,” as I recently learned the insiders say), he’s really hitting his stride.

This isn’t a PlaNYC 2030, but there’s still a lot of meat in here — “no kid hungry,” “Office for New Americans,” economic development, energy efficiency, public service training. He proposed building an enormous convention center in Queens, for God’s sake, and freeing up the windswept Javits zone on the West Side for dense mixed-use development, patching a hole in the city and bringing organic life to a part of Manhattan that’s gone artificial. In a year in which my home state of California seems mired in budgetary troubles that seem they may never end, it’s exciting to see the governor of my adopted state reaching so high.

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