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Greens Seek To Draw Contrast With Both Cuomo And Nixon

Greens Seek To Draw Contrast With Both Cuomo And Nixon

NY State of Politics, June 14, 2018

Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins doesn’t want voters to think the choice for progressives is between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon.

Hawkins, who is launching his third bid for governor this year atop the Green Party ticket, has sought to draw contrasts in recent weeks between his candidacy and the platform of both Cuomo and Nixon.

It’s potentially a challenge: Nixon is seeking to draw liberal votes away from Cuomo in the primary and, should she remain in the race on the Working Families Party line, come November. For now, polling has shown Cuomo with mostly steady support from liberal voters.

But Hawkins has pointed out releases and elsewhere that both Democratic candidates are not necessarily good for New York on issues like the property tax cap.

The measure is a signature issue for Cuomo and Nixon has said she supports it, but wants to make it easier to override.

“Tax cap is a campaign sound bite, not a sound policy,” Hawkins said. “There is nothing progressive in Nixon’s call for an easier voter override of the cap. The cap still freezes the inequities in funding schools and local government services between low- and middle-income communities and affluent communities. It still institutionalizes rising property taxes.”

Hawkins insisted his plan would lead to a property tax cut, by shifting from local property and sales taxes to a progressive state income and stock transfer tax.

“Then the state should use those revenues to provide adequate and equitable school funding and to pay for the state’s unfunded mandates on local governments with increased revenue sharing,” Hawkins said.

At the same time, Hawkins in an email Wednesday question Nixon’s prior support for Hillary Clinton and noted the Green party outpolled the Working Families Party in the previous election — a result that ultimately determines placement on the ballot in the next election.

“Now the media is starstruck with actress Cynthia Nixon,” he said. “As she challenges Gov. Cuomo in the Democratic primary with Working Families Party backing, the media give regular coverage to self-styled ‘progressive’ Democrats, which includes Cuomo as well as Nixon, Bill DeBlasio, Zephyr Teachout, and the rest of the WFP-endorsed Democrats.”

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