Cuomo praises Bloomberg, cautions against predicting the Supreme Court on Obama health care

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Andrew Cuomo and Michael Bloomberg. (Azi Paybarah via Flickr)
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Fresh off a well-received budget deal, Governor Andrew Cuomo went on a victory lap this morning with an interview on New York Post editor Fred Dicker's radio show on Talk 1300, and a subsequent appearance with Susan Arbetter on WCNY.

During the Dicker show, the governor lavished an unusual amount of praise on Mayor Michael Bloomberg, with whom he's had an off-and-on relationship, and explained the politics behind his decision to create a health care exchange by executive order.

In December, the mayor's Albany lobbyist was banned from the governor's office.

This morning, Cuomo again called reports of tension between himself and Mayor Bloomberg "grossly overblown."

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"I understand the sensational value of them, but it was just, wasn’t true," said the governor. "Institutionally, a governor and a mayor sometimes advocate for their own causes and sometimes advocate for different causes, because of their institutional roles. But I’ve always had a very strong personal relationship with the mayor. I’ve known him for many, many years. He’s been very kind to me. We’re friends, he’s friends with my family. He was supportive of me in my election, when he didn’t have to be. So he’s gone out of his way to be kind to me, and I enjoy our personal relationship."

He also said, “Mayor Bloomberg didn’t get everything he wanted.”

Unrelated, the governor explained the politics behind his decision to enact a health care exchange by executive order. Though the exchange is required under the president's health care law, the State Senate Republicans are reluctant to approve it, in part because the case is now under review by the Supreme Court.

Dicker asked the governor if, given the contentious oral arguments thus far, he should wait until the Supreme Court issues its ruling before moving ahead.

"You know, Fred, I’ve argued appeals and trying to read tea leaves by the questions of the judges can sometimes get you into trouble," Cuomo said. "I understand the argument is ongoing. I understand the reluctance of the Senate, literally while the argument is going on, to pass a health exchange. I mean, I understand the discordancy there. So we agreed that they wouldn’t pass it and I will set it up by executive order."