Dishing with Dee: Opposing groups find common ground on Cuomo’s budget

By Dee Richard

Has anyone noticed a rather remarkable groundswell of support for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget agenda? This support comes from all factions of the electorate not just his Democratic base. As a columnist, it’s part and parcel of my job to notice and become aware of such trends and hopefully pass on the information for your perusal.

The point of discussion is pertinent to the proliferation of support for Cuomo’s budget. Up until a few weeks ago, all sides were killing each other, each insisting it was either their way or the highway. Miracle of miracles, all of these diversified factions seem to be on the same page and without some sort of catastrophic event forcing them to do so. It would seem they all woke up one morning with the identical beliefs that if it were at all possible to prevent the fiscal crisis in the state and the city of New York, it could only be accomplished by unilateral cooperation.

As most of you must be aware, many New Yorkers are voting with their feet — you can only cripple the middle-class taxpayer so much. At one point he will inform his family it is more economically feasible to move to a more tax-friendly area.

Here in New York state, the politicians have ensured themselves re-election by providing numerous entitlement programs to their constituents. Where does this money come from to support these programs? Why, obviously it comes from the hardworking taxpayers to subsidize the non-productive entitlement recipients. In essence, your elected official is buying his re-election with your taxpayer dollars.

Don’t you think those same taxpayer dollars would be better spent on education, schools, hospitals, health, infrastructure, transportation, etc.? If the hardworking taxpayer sees his money being wasted on things that are not to the benefit or advantage of everyday people, then he will vote with his feet.

If you have incubated a mass of people who think they are entitled to all these benefits from someone else’s labors and those taxpayers eliminate themselves and their finances, how do you continue to support these entitlement programs? Civil unrest is certainly to be expected when you remove all the benefits these people are accustomed to receiving.

We have Republican state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos saying he applauds Cuomo’s budget and is awaiting the details and further said the state simply cannot continue to put off the spending reductions that are necessary to close the deficit. All levels of government need to understand they have to do more with less. Next we have state Conservative Party Chairman Michael Long saying “politics make strange bedfellows, and I’m not talking about Eliot Spitzer. I’m talking about Mike Long and Andrew Cuomo.”

Long further said his party will soon mount an aggressive, costly, grassroots campaign to generate support for the Democratic governor’s fiscal agenda. The grassroots effort will be financed with money from the party’s campaign coffers, which in July received a $1 million donation from Robert Mercer of the Renaissance Technologies Corp.

Next we have support for Cuomo’s budget from the Patriot Action Network. They support the governor’s budget plan as a big step in the right direction. This was forwarded to us by Michael Caputo, who was the former campaign manager for Carl Paladino.

Speaking of Caputo, he also informed us that he personally is encouraging all New Yorkers to contact their elected officials to support Cuomo’s budget.

Another group heard from is the powerful Ulster/Orange Tea Party Group, which also advocated for Cuomo’s budget and suggested that all should contact their local officials to indicate their support.

More to follow next week.

That’s it for this week.

I look forward to hearing from you with information on people, parties and politics or gossip. I like receiving your voice mails at 718-767-6484, faxes at 718-746-0066 and e-mails at deerrichard@aol.com.

Don’t forget to check out the Focus on Queens page.

Till next week, Dee.

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