Gov. Andrew Cuomo urged the state Legislature to pass all 10 points of his women’s rights agenda, but conceded he would still be pleased if all the measures except an abortion piece were to pass.
Speaking to reporters, Cuomo said that Senate Republicans would be failing in their public duty if they didn’t bring the language to strengthen abortion rights in New York to a vote before the session ends this week. Yet he said it wouldn’t be a failure if the other nine pieces were the only ones to pass.
“If we pass those nine, it’s a great day for women of the state of New York,” Cuomo said. That’s a change in the position of Cuomo and women’s rights groups: They said it was essentially all 10 or nothing.
Still, he said the abortion piece should be brought to a vote.
“Take the vote,” Cuomo said. “You can have whatever opinion you want, but where do you get the right not to tell the people the state your opinion?”
Cuomo heads into the final days of the session touting some victories. He said tax-free zones for businesses who locate near college campuses is the “boldest economic development program for upstate New York ever. Period.”
He said the agreement to allow for four upstate casinos would boost the upstate economy, and he said he will move forward with a state investigative body to root out corruption of campaign-finance spending through a Moreland Commission panel.
He said he was unable to reach a deal with lawmakers on an anti-corruption package, so he’ll do the Moreland panel, which would have sweeping investigative powers.
“I said I am unwilling to compromise,” Cuomo said.