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Hawkins: Me Too 

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, at this point, doesn't appear to be close to agreeing to any debates in the race for governor. 

Far ahead of his nearest rival, Republican Rob Astorino, in both fundraising and the public opinion polls, Cuomo also enjoys the trappings of an incumbent governor: Name recognition and the ability to travel the state at any time.

Nevertheless, Astorino, along with Cuomo's Democratic primary rival Zephyr Teachout, are calling for a series of debates with Cuomo -- events that could do well to raise their own name recognition at his expense. 

Astorino and Teachout plan their own debate -- a Sept. 4 radio event on WNYC -- without Cuomo. 

But there is at least one candidate feeling left out: Green Party nominee Howie Hawkins. 

He achieved automatic ballot status this cycle when Hawkins gained more than 50,000 votes. 

This time around, his campaign hasn't let up on opportunities for fundraise and organize, especially off of slights like not being included in a debate. 

Hawkins's campaign this morning released a fundraising email in an effort to garner contributions from the debate diss. 

"The debate will be covered by the mainstream media and papers for weeks to come," Hawkins said. "This is a great opportunity for our campaign to reach out to millions of voters who are clamoring for real change. We want to put ads on radio and TV so that voters hear about our progressive message."

Of course, the 2010 gubernatorial debate was a major farce, with Cuomo and his Republican opponent Carl Paladino appearing on stage with a variety of characters, including the Rent Is 2 Damn High candidate Jimmy McMillan (who has petitioned his way on to the statewide ballot yet again). 

In addition to McMillan, there are a host of minor-party candidates ranging from Albany-area activist Michael Carey, Libertarian candidate Sam Sloan and a filing for the Sapient Party, which appears to have a collage of ideological policies

Astorino doesn't want to include Hawkins in a statewide debate with Cuomo, preferring to have it be a one-on-one affair. 

But if the polls hold heading into the fall, Cuomo may very well call for debates, just with every candidate appearing on the ballot as he did four years ago. 

WNY Republicans Raising For Cahill 

From the blog, ICYMI:

A host of prominent western New York Republicans are holding a fundraiser on Wednesday for GOP attorney general hopeful John Cahill.

Tickets range from $99 to $500.

Included on the invitation for the event is Erie County GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy, 2010 gubernatorial nominee Carl Paladino and Dennis Vacco, the last Republican to hold attorney general’s post. He was unseated in 1998 by Eliot Spitzer.

Also on the invitation is Ralph Lorigo, the Conservative Party chairman in Erie County.

The invite was blasted out in an email by Paladino.

Happening Today

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Essex County and New York City.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is in the city with no public schedule.

At 10 a.m., Westchester County Executive and GOP gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino will visit Letchworth State Park with his wife, Sheila, and three children, 1 Letchworth State Park, Castile.

Also at 10 a.m., the Bangladeshi American Advocacy Group holds a press conference to endorse Democratic gubernatorial candidate Zephyr Teachout, Diversity Plaza, Jackson Heights, Queens.

Also at 10 a.m., the Chris Gibson for Congress Campaign will be announcing an Agriculture Coalition in support of the congressman’s re-election, 34684 New York 10, Walton.

At 10:30 a.m., Sen. Ruth Hassell-Thompson announces hr re-election campaign, Bronx Borough Hall.

At 11 a.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, Upper Jay Firehouse, 161 Valley Rd., Jay.

Also at 11 a.m., Onondaga County Comptroller Bob Antonacci, the GOP state comptroller candidate, will issue a “challenge” to his Democratic opponent, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, west Capitol steps, Albany.

Also at 11 a.m., Rep. Steve Israel promotes legislative proposals that would establish federal and state tax credits to reimburse the cost of college admission exams, placement exams and preparation courses; 64-31 Douglaston Pkwy., Queens.

Also at 11 a.m., the executive director of the Bella Abzug Leadership Institute, Liz J. Abzug, Manhattan BP Gale Brewer, former Manhattan BP C. Virginia Fields, the executive director of the New York City CFB, Amy M. Loprest, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney and state lawmakers take a pledge to register women to vote; steps, City Hall.

At approximately 12:15 p.m., Cuomo receives a briefing on progress on construction on Whiteface Veteran’s Memorial Highway, Whiteface Veteran’s Memorial Highway, Lake Placid turn, Wilmington.

At 12:30 p.m., Astorino will be a guest on Long Island News Radio with host John Gomez.

At 2 p.m., Teachout and National Organization for Women New York State President Zenaida Mendez hold a press conference to discuss NOW-NYS’s endorsement of Teachout, Eleanor Roosevelt Statue, 72nd St. and Riverside Drive, Manhattan.

Also at 2 p.m., Sens. Patrick Gallivan and Mark Grisanti hold press conference to present grant for alternative to incarceration program, National Federation for Just Communities Inc. headquarters, 360 Delaware Ave., Buffalo.

At 3 p.m., Astorino will hold a press conference continuing his state tour unveiling the Astorino/Moss jobs plan, Cobbs Hill Reservoir Overlook (near Cobbs Hill Monument), Reservoir Rd., Rochester.

At 6 p.m., NY-24 GOP candidate John Katko holds a town hall-style meeting, Palace Theater, 2384 James St., Syracuse.

At 6:30 p.m., supporters of the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages hold a demonstration near Gracie Mansion; East End Avenue and 88th Street, Manhattan.

At 7:30 p.m., Chemung County Sheriff and GOP LG candidate Chris Moss attends and speaks at the Queens Village Republican Club Meet the Candidates Rally, Knights of Columbus, St. Annes Council, 263-15 Union Turnpike, Glen Oaks. (GOP AG candidate John Cahill will also attend the rally, arriving at 8 p.m.)

At 8:45 p.m., Moss attends and speaks at the Bay Terrace Community Alliance Meet the Candidates Night, Bay Terrace Jewish Center, 1300 209th St., Bayside, Queens.

On CapTon Last Night: 

Acting New York State Fair Director Troy Waffner talks to us about progress that’s been made since the fair started, and what’s coming in the fair’s future.

It’s one of the biggest tourist events for Central New York, and it’s also very popular with locals – including local officials. We spoke to Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney about what the fair means for the area and other issues.

The 21st Congressional District is up for grabs after Democratic Bill Owens announced he would not be seeking re-election. Among the candidates trying to take is place is Green party candidate Matt Funiciello. We talked to him about his campaign.

The New York State Fair is a great place for politicians and candidates to get out meet voters- even ones who don’t have an opponent. Senator Dave Valesky has already made four visits to the fairgrounds since opening day. He was on to talk about both serious … and fun topics.

Monday was Dairy Day at the New York State Fair, a day to celebrate the state’s dairy industry. But a huge highlight of the fair is always the display of the entire agriculture industry in New York. State Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard Ball was on to talk more about that.



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