1:15 pm Aug. 21, 2012
State Senate candidate Mindy Meyer is the subject of a three-page photo spread in the New York Post today.
In an accompanying interview, she said, "My hair looks so presidential." She also said she was misquoted in an earlier interview in which she said she wasn't familiar with Andrew Cuomo.
Meyer's candidacy has gotten an inordinate amount of attention, considering that she's a first-time candidate with no track record and is running only on the Conservative line against a Democratic incumbent (Kevin Parker) in a heavily minority, heavily Democratic district. (I bear some responsibility for this, probably, for having called attention to her rather remarkable website in the first place.)
Her "misquote" allegation referred to a July 23 interview with me, in which she in fact professed a lack of knowledge about Cuomo and Albany that she went out and confirmed in subsequent interviews with Fox 5 and, funnily enough, the Post.
This isn't the first time Meyer has claimed I misquoted her, and a few weeks ago, after she first alleged it, I offered to play my recording of the interview for Meyer's campaign manager, Isaac Shteirman. He agreed and we scheduled a time later that afternoon to speak by phone where I would play him the tape. I called Shteirman's cell phone at the designated time and got his voice mail. I left a message and never heard back.
In a July 24 interview on "Good Day New York," Meyer was unable to identify New York State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos.
"You need to know him," "Good Day New York" anchor Rosanna Scott said. "He's a big powerhouse."
Then, Meyer was shown a photograph of New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, the longest-serving legislative leader in the state's history.
Scotto said, "You need to know who these people are."
Meyer eventually said, "Right. Honestly, that I'm not too worried about. I heard these names before and I would learn the issues and I would just focus on causing change for my constituents."
In a July 30 interview with New York Post reporter Beth Defalco, Meyer was asked about not knowing Cuomo.
She said she was misquoted and said she knew who he was, but just wasn't familiar with his political views.
Then, Defalco writes: "Asked to name one, Meyer, an Orthodox Jew, said she knew that Cuomo was 'trying' to pass some gay-marriage legislation that she didn’t agree with."
(At that point, same-sex marriage had been on the books for a year--the best-known piece of legislation produced by Albany since Cuomo became governor, and for a while before that, too.)
Here is a transcript of the relevant part of the interview I did with her:
AP: "What do you think of Andrew Cuomo? He's someone who went to Albany saying he's going to change things. How do you think he's doing?"
MM: "Um, honestly, I can't speak for other people. He said he'll go to Albany and change things. Listen, just, I'm saying, like, why should I be used as his frame of reference? He said he'll do things different, good for him. I will. There's show versus tell. I'll show. I can tell you what I want. But there's, I, I, uh, just, if people vote for me, I'll actually get up there and show you, you know, I can't say, you know, he, so, he didn't do anything. But that's not me. I will do things. So."
AP: "Right, but, but if you go up there he's one of the people that is sort of instrumental in how the place operates and what gets things done. And I'm just wondering, do you think he's done a good job, if you think he's, if he's someone you can work with, or if you think he's someone who's part of the problem that you're going up there to change."
MM: "OK. Andrew who?"
MM: "Andrew Cuomo."
MM: "Um, honestly, I'm not really familiar with him."
AP: "He's the governor."
[Meyer takes another call and puts me on hold. After 47 seconds, she returns to the line.]
MM: "Sorry, hello?"
MM: "Yes, OK, I'm not, I'm not familiar with him in particular, like his issues, and you know, everything about him. I'm not, you're asking me how I would work with him?"
MM: "Yes, so, I guess, I would have to see if I was elected."