Posted on | April 17, 2012 | 9 Comments
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo evidently assigned his communication director Richard Bamberger to compile a 35-page dossier on the work of YNN reporter/blogger Liz Benjamin:
The file, composed of highlighted and annotated blog items by Elizabeth Benjamin, one of Albany’s dominant political reporters, paints a picture of an executive branch that’s particularly averse to hints that Cuomo could be, as is widely assumed, conidering running for president in 2016. The document focuses particularly on seven items it describes as “GENERALLY SNARKY,” including one in which this passage is highlighted:
“The governor has already been speculated to harbor White House aspirations himself — an effort that would enable him to surpass the record of his father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo, who contemplated, but never went for, a presidential run.”
Other sections of the document highlight any language that could possibly be interpreted as critical of Cuomo, much of it innocuous by most standards: The highlighted passages include Benjamin characterizing the Governor’s phrase “celebration on 9/11” as “an interesting choice of words” and her writing that he “declined to put even a ballpark figure on the coast of storm clean-up.”
Seven of the items are labeled “GENERALLY SNARKY”; an eighth, about parking placards, is given as an “Example of poor reporting/Inadequate fact-checking before distribution.”
A politician obsessed with his image? No big deal. What’s weird is that the governor’s communication director — employed at taxpayer expense — should be doing this kind of clearly political work, which would seem more appropriate to a campaign operative or consultant.
By the way, if anyone for the Mitt Romney campaign has been assigned to evaluate his coverage in the blogosphere, my entry should read: “GENERALLY SNARKY. Prone to expressions of hopeless gloom. Has expressed willingness to stop blogging about Mitt in exchange for six-figure ‘consulting fee.'”