Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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NY1 Political Director Bob Hardt's daily look Inside City Hall.

NY1 ItCH: The Odd Trio on the Hudson

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One's up for re-election, another is dreaming ahead to 2016, while the third wants to transform his party and his city. And they're all giving each other political cover.

It was quite the photo op yesterday – with Gov. Cuomo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Mayor de Blasio joining forces to discuss regional security – and deftly avoiding talking about anything else.

Christie last week got excited at his birthday party/fundraiser, telling the faithful that the country would have been better off had his Number One Party Guest, Mitt Romney, beat Barack Obama. But he bristled yesterday when NY1's Zack Fink asked him if that applied to the Middle East as well.

Channeling his inner Hulk, the governor snapped at Fink: " I don't think that that's, quite frankly, Zack, I'm not the least bit surprised by your off-topic question, and you will not be the least bit surprised by the fact that there is no chance, zero chance, that I'm answering your off-topic question."

Nothing to see here – beyond three very different politicians all joining forces to help each other.

As Bridgegate and his actions within the Port Authority still cloud Christie's future, Cuomo steadfastly refuses to discuss the goings-on of an agency that he happens to run along with New Jersey's big man. It's difficult to imagine Cuomo ceding control of anything to anyone and it's hard to fathom that he wasn't aware of Christie's meddlings with the George Washington Bridge.

Meanwhile, Mayor de Blasio can smile a little during all of this. He's fresh off helping the governor over the finish line in his surprisingly-competitive primary fight with Zephyr Teachout. And while he has little in common with Christie besides the fact that they're both human beings, de Blasio hugged him twice while also commending Cuomo and Christie's "partnership."

While Cuomo stays mum on Bridgegate, Christie is carefully minding the purse strings of the Republican Governors Association, refusing to dole out a dollar for a Republican candidate for governor in New York, saying in July that his group won't invest in "lost causes." It's a see-no-evil, fund-no-Astorino deal that helps both men. Meanwhile, de Blasio – who had to force his way into yesterday's picture – can just smile.

Bob Hardt

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