Cuomo collects his plaudits

Briefing: 2016 Rankings (Washington Post)
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Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver reached an agreement on what stands to be the first New York State budget since 1983 finalized before the April 1 deadline.

This morning, the governor collected his laurels. The Daily News said that while legislative leaders were helpful, Cuomo deserved "the lion's share" of the credit. The Post said Cuomo has "made Albany boring again. And good for him."

All very helpful, 2016-wise.

His partner Sandra Lee seems to be doing her part, too: The queen of semi-homemade Kwanzaa cakes is reportedly taking her brand upmarket. That's according to Page Six, which reports this morning that "The Semi-Homemade creator is stepping away from the brand name that made her fortune but drew scorn from other chefs. She’s closed Semi-Homemade magazine and is moving forward with home line Sandra by Sandra Lee, and also developing a new Food Network show under the Sandra Lee brand."

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She's also courting fashion celebrity (and Obama fund-raiser) Anna Wintour.

"Some speculate Lee is seeking greater gravitas as the partner of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, rumored to have his sights set on an eventual presidential run," reports Page Six. "Others say she’s crafting her personal brand into an empire."

2012

Newt Gingrich, realizing he can't win the nomination by the traditional means of attracting support from primary voters, is cutting staff and focusing on the convention. [Michael Shear and Trip Gabriel]

Obama's lawyers faced some sharp questioning from the Supreme Court yesterday on Obamacare, "suggesting that a 5-to-4 decision to strike down the law was a live possibility." [Adam Liptak]

The impasse among House Republicans, and between the House and Senate, over the surface transportation bill is beginning to resemble the debt-ceiling debate. [Jake Sherman, Burgess Everett and Adam Snider]

John Boehner says it's inappropriate to criticize the president while he's on a diplomatic mission, after Mitt Romney rips into Obama for his Medvedev hot-mic incident.  [Alexandra Jaffe]

Medvedev chides Romney, too. [Vladimir Isachenkov]

2013

John Liu will either run for mayor or nothing, and the rush to replace him as comptroller begins now. [Julia Marsh and Carl Campanile]

The Post urges Scott Stringer to support N.Y.U.'s expansion plans already. [New York Post

The Daily News calls the economics of the Quinn-32BJ prevailing wage law "nonsensical." [Daily News]

The Citizens Budget Commission says whatever happens with prevailing wage, the process by which it is set needs to be way more transparent. [Carol Kellermann]

Quinn, meanwhile, writes an op-ed with David Greenfield arguing that since the city started using punitive parking stickers in 1988, street cleanliness barely improved, so we don't need them. [Christine Quinn and David Greenfield]

Local

Poetry in Motion is back. [Jennifer Fermino]

The D.A. only realized that Lloyd Constantine, a former Spitzer adviser, was on the current rape-cop jury after he trashed the prosecution's case to a fellow juror. Fellow former Spitzerite Darren Dopp calls Constantine "a very arrogant individual." [Melissa Grace, Barbara Ross and Corky SIemaszki]

Park Slope Food Coop votes against Israel food ban, most debated issue since plastic-bag-ban, in a 1,005 to 653 vote. [Alexander Nazaryan, Oren Yaniv and Bill Hutchinson]

The boycott's organizer says the attempt was still a success in the consciousness-raising realm.  [Kirk Semple and Gersh Kuntzman]