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Cuomo Pushes For Women's Equality Act

Office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo

Andrew Cuomo's office kicked-started the day by spreading word that the Governor had published an op-ed in The Huffington Post titled "Restoring New York as a Leader in Women's Rights.” The timing seems right: women's groups are rallying this noonhour at the State Capitol in Albany, on the heels of Cuomo's mid-morning press event the 10-point "Women's Equality Act" which includes strengthening abortion rights in New York.

In March of this year, the Roman Catholic bishops of New York met with Cuomo, himself a Catholic, to discuss their objections to his abortion stance. In short, the bishops told Cuomo that “abortion is not the answer.”

Kathleen Gallagher, director of pro-life activities for the New York State Catholic Conference of Bishops, says the group sees any attempt by Cuomo to strengthen abortion rights as an expansion of late-term abortion.

Also in March, New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms, a conservative group with Christian leadership, lobbied at the Capitol against expanding abortion in New York. Jason McGuire, the organization's executive director, says the last thing that New York needs is to invite late-term abortionists to set up shop in the Empire State.

McGuire adds that he believes Governor Cuomo is holding the other elements of his Women's Equality Act hostage to late-term abortion expansion.  Speaking to reporters this morning Cuomo says the coalition has voted to push his entire policy package.

With less than 3 weeks left in the legislative session, observers think the Women's Equality Act will fly in the Assembly, but warn it faces an uncertain future in the Senate.

The Tax-Free New York "push" carries on without Cuomo: he's sent a couple of cabinet members out to press events scheduled for today.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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