After the Storm
WASHINGTON — Mayor Michael Bloomberg is in Washington D.C. today meeting with lawmakers and other officials about his request for billions of dollars in federal aid to help the city recover from the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy last month in New York. Though many City residents affected by Sandy have had some criticism about FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security’s response to the storm, at a press conference in the Capitol Building this afternoon, Mr. Bloomberg said he didn’t have a single issue with the federal followup to the hurricane.
Senator Chuck Schumer is known for pushing populist issues that may have otherwise flown under the radar, and last weekend, he didn’t disappoint. In a letter to the Federal Communications Commission last weekend, Mr. Schumer called on the agency to develop a nationwide plan to improve cell phone service in the aftermath of natural disasters. Earlier today, Mr. Schumer announced the FCC would at least give the New York area a better look by holding field hearings early next year on the issue.
“Field hearings will increase our understanding of the problems encountered during Superstorm Sandy and harvest the best ideas to ensure that mobile phone service doesn’t fail after future storms,” Mr. Schumer said in a statement. “Mobile communication has become an essential part of our lives, and increasing its reliability must be a top priority. I’d like to thank Chairman Genachowski and the FCC for their good work during the storm, and for beginning to tackle this important issue so quickly after.”
GOP Congressman Michael Grimm has been dogged by multiple controversies, but none are more notable than a federal investigation that, according to a New York Times report, likely stems from whether he illegally obtained hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions during his first electoral effort in 2010. Mr. Grimm has steadfastly maintained his innocence and he has never been charged with wrongdoing, but questions remain as to what evidence spurred the probe.
One theory advanced was from Mr. Grimm’s political mentor, and occasional campaign spokesman, Guy Molinari, who has repeatedly accused Senator Chuck Schumer of “calling up” Attorney General Eric Holder and pushing the Department of Justice to investigate the Staten Island congressman, possibly as a political tactic to stop Mr. Grimm from running statewide someday.
Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Vice President Joe Biden aren’t exactly friends of one another. During the 2008 presidential campaign, for example, Mr. Biden famously quipped of Mr. Giuliani, “There’s only three things he mentions in a sentence —a noun, a verb, and 9/11.”
Subsequently, in response to a string of gaffes earlier this year, including his infamous “put y’all back in chains” remark, Mr. Giuliani more than proved he could return fire, and questioned Mr. Biden’s fitness to serve in office.
A couple days ago, Senator Chuck Schumer critiqued Mayor Michael Bloomberg for what he felt was a false equivalency between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney on gun control. Earlier this morning, however, Mr. Bloomberg fired back and said Mr. Schumer is “just wrong” on this matter.
“The disgrace is once they get into office, then they don’t do anything,” he said after addressing both candidates’ failures on economic policy. “Guns, I’ve been riling against guns. But neither presidential candidate has said what they’ll do. I saw Senator Schumer–who I agree with on an awful lot of things, but in this case I think he’s just wrong–he says, ‘Obama’s a lot better on guns than Romney.’”
chuck weighs in
CHARLOTTE, NC — In his speech tonight at the Democratic National Convention, New York Senator Chuck Schumer discussed why he believes “Mitt Romney’s plans would make things worse” for the economy.
He began by reminiscing about his family–and their attachment to roach spray.
“I stand here tonight as a proud son of the great state of New York! I’m also a proud product of the middle class,” Mr. Schumer said in a prepared copy of his remarks distributed by the convention staff. “My father, Abe, was a small businessman. For 32 years, he ran an exterminating company. That may explain why our family always associated the smell of roach spray with love.”
The latest video from controversial conservative provocateur James O’Keefe’s “Project Veritas” implies unions and several big name New York politicians are colluding to earn state and federal contracts for do-nothing companies purporting to hire for so-called “environmental jobs.”
In the clip, Mr. O’Keefe portrays an executive for a business that literally digs ditches and fills them back up with more dirt. He visits with John Hutchings, whom he describes as a “director” of the Laborers’ International Union of North America, and former assemblyman Ronald Tocci and another man who apparently discuss how easy it is for them to use their lobbyists and political connections to get cash for businesses.
“When we go for a bill, you know, you’ve got to get approval of the Senate, and the Assembly and then the Governor’s got to sign that. We have a lobbyist for the Senate [Republicans], and we have a lobbyist for the Democrats and that’s how we try to push our agenda through,” Mr. Hutchings says in the video.
Republicans are using a pair of Democratic heavyweights to fight the Obama campaigns repeated charge that Mitt Romney shipped American jobs overseas as Governor of Massachusetts and through his work with Bain Capital. This morning, the Romney campaign released an ad entitled “No Evidence” citing criticisms of the Obama campaign’s outsourcing attacks featuring footage of Hillary Clinton during the 2008 primary campaign saying, “Shame on you Barack Obama.” The RNC also released a research paper focused on Senator Chuck Schumer criticizing stimulus projects for driving money to “foreign companies.”
Ending the suspense, U.S. Sen Chuck Schumer threw his weight behind Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries today in his congressional race against Charles Barron.
“I know the streets of this district like the back of my hand from when I represented many of its neighborhoods, and I know that Hakeem Jeffries is the man who will get the job done for all the people in Brooklyn and Queens,” said Senator Schumer. “Assemblymember Hakeem Jeffries is the perfect combination of smart, hard-working and caring — and, from creating jobs to protecting affordable housing to educating our kids to delivering services for our seniors, he has a record of accomplishment to prove it. He is a true blue friend of Israel and has a sophisticated sense of America’s unique role in a complex, interconnected world. He is full of energy and promise and talent, and I am proud to endorse him to be the next congressman from the 8th district.”
Yesterday, it was reported that Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin renounced his U.S. citizenship in order to avoid being hit with large tax bill when the company goes public.
Today, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer announced new legislation that would prevent such schemes.
“Mr. Saverin has decided to ‘defriend’ the United States of America just to avoid paying his taxes. We aren’t going to let him get away with it so easily,” Mr. Schumer said. “It’s infuriating to see someone sell out the country that welcomed him and kept him safe, educated him and helped him become a billionaire. This is a great American success story gone horribly wrong. We plan to put a stop to this tax avoidance scheme. There should be no financial gain from renouncing your country.”