Harry Wilson (R), a 2010 comptroller nominee, announced Monday that he will not run for governor in 2018, citing a desire to spend more time with his family.
Wilson: “Of course, to be in a position to carry out this agenda, I would have to wage a winning campaign. I recognize that would be hard, both given the state’s voter registration rolls and the current political climate, but I have thought and continue to think there is a path to victory.” (Facebook)
“He made his final decision during ‘quiet family time over the Christmas holidays’ and took several extra days ‘to let it sink in,’ [a] source said. But he is not ruling out a future gubernatorial in four years.” (New York Daily News)
Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro (R) “said Wilson called him Sunday to tell him he would not run. Molinaro said he expected to make his own decision in the coming days.” (Rochester Democrat & Chronicle)
Erie County Republican Chairman Nicholas Langworthy “said it’s time for the party to hit a ‘hard re-set’ on the process to find someone to challenge” Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D). (New York Daily News)
THE BIG GUY. “Cuomo is expected to have roughly $30 million in his campaign account when he reports to the state Board of Elections later this month.” (Politico)
“The tiny Independence Party endorsed … Cuomo for re-election on [last month] — before even seeing what alternative the Republican Party is offering. Indy Party Chairman Frank MacKay cited Cuomo’s record of accomplishment on infrastructure, criminal justice reform and the tuition assistance for middle income students attending public colleges as reason to back him for a third term.” (New York Post)
“Cuomo is planning to unveil a ‘Democracy Agenda’ to safeguard the integrity of New York elections and require transparency for digital political ads as part of his 2018 State of the State address in January.” (New York Observer)
WORTH WATCHING. “Cuomo isn’t a defendant and he doesn’t expect to be a witness when the first public corruption trial involving a former member of his administration [Joseph Percoco] and some of his biggest contributors begins next month. But from the opening moments, potential jurors are likely to hear Cuomo’s name in a trial that could have political implications for the governor and his 2018 re-election plans.” (Buffalo News)
“Trade unions, which have closely aligned themselves with … Cuomo and other politicians, have secured deals requiring underground construction work to be staffed by as many as four times more laborers than elsewhere in the world.” (New York Times) “Cuomo, during his annual State of the State address on Wednesday, is expected to endorse a congestion plan that would charge motorists to enter Manhattan’s central business district.” (Wall Street Journal)
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"The Justice Department inspector general referred its finding that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe repeatedly misled investigators who were examining a media disclosure to the top federal prosecutor in D.C. to determine whether McCabe should be charged with a crime." The referral occurred "after the inspector general concluded McCabe had lied to investigators or his own boss, then-FBI Director James B. Comey, on four occasions, three of them under oath." The referral does "not necessarily mean McCabe will be charge with a crime ... although the report alleged that one of McCabe’s lies 'was done knowingly and intentionally.'"
A federal appeals court in Chicago "upheld a nationwide injunction against making federal grant funding contingent on cooperation with immigration enforcement." The three Republican appointees ruled that the Trump administration "exceeded its legal authority in trying to implement the new conditions without approval from Congress ... One judge on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals panel, Reagan appointee Daniel Manion, said he would narrow the injunction solely to protect Chicago. However, the two other judges assigned to the case said the nationwide injunction appeared to be justified."
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley "decided Thursday to delay markup" on a bill to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller until next week. But he remains steadfast in his support for a committee vote, despite Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's "pledge to kill it" if it gets to the floor.
North Korea has expressed its commitment to 'complete denuclearisation' of the Korean peninsula and is not seeking conditions, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Thursday. ... South Korea announced on Wednesday that it is considering how to change a decades-old armistice with North Korea into a peace agreement as it prepares for the North-South summit this month." The leaders of the respective countries are also expected to connect a phone line so they can communicate directly.
"California reached an agreement with the federal government that the state’s National Guard troops will deploy to the border to focus on fighting transnational gangs as well as drug and gun smugglers, Gov. Jerry Brown said. ... Brown said Wednesday he secured federal funding for terms similar to those outlined in last week’s proposed contract: The Guard cannot handle custody duties for anyone accused of immigration violations, build border barriers or have anything to do with immigration enforcement."