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POLITICO New York Playbook: SCHNEIDERMAN's anti-Trump moment -- MARK THOMPSON fires back at 'dwindling' NYT claim -- JAVITS expansion price jumps

02/03/2017 07:24 AM EDT

By Jimmy Vielkind in Albany and Azi Paybarah in Manhattan, with Addy Baird and Daniel Lippman

WILL THIS MAN TAKE DOWN DONALD TRUMP? - David Freedlander in POLITICO Magazine: "I like you. You and me, we're going to be best friends." It is early January, and Eric Schneiderman is sitting in his 25th-floor office above Lower Manhattan, doing his best Donald Trump impression, puckering his lips into a duck face, scrunching up his nose and lowering his voice into something that resembles the president's outer-borough growl. Schneiderman is recalling his meeting with Trump in 2010. Back then, Schneiderman was running for attorney general of New York, and Trump was still in his pre-birther, reality TV host phase. Trump had donated money to one of Schneiderman's opponents in the Democratic primary. Schneiderman managed to pull off a come-from-behind victory, and after the race, he went to Trump Tower to ask for a donation for the general election. Trump coughed up $12,500 to the Democrat, and Schneiderman went on to beat his Republican opponent and win.

... In the six years after he won that race, Schneiderman has emerged as perhaps the lefty media's favorite lawyer, tangling with mortgage bankers, Exxon Mobil, and national retailers like Abercrombie & Fitch, J Crew and The Gap. And on November 9, he was handed what might become his largest target when Donald Trump, his longtime nemesis, was elected president.

-- On Thursday, Schneiderman sued over Trump's immigration order.

HAPPY FRIDAY! -- Got a tip? Feedback? News to share? Let us know. By email:,,, and, or on Twitter: @JimmyVielkind, @Azi, @addysue, and @dlippman.

TABS -- Daily News: "DON, WHAT ABOUT US?" U.S. jobs czar among billionaire investors in upstate plant that cut ages" -- Post: "THE PEZINATOR: Trump vs. Arnold, Berkley, Iran Australia..." -- Newsday: "SEPARATE & UNEQUAL" -- El Diario [translated]: Behind closed doors -- SEE THEM:


BROADSHEETS -- WSJ, 5-col., above the fold: "Trump Moves to Undo Dodd-Frank" -- NYT, 2-col., above the fold: "Trump Reverts to Pillars Of Obama Policies Abroad" -- SEE THEM:

QUOTE OF THE DAY:"I bet it's brand new information to people that President Obama had a six-month ban on the Iraqi refugee program after two Iraqis came here, to this country, were radicalized and were the masterminds of the Bowling Green Massacre" -- Kellyanne Conway, a top adviser to Donald Trump, getting three facts wrong in one sentence, during an interview with MSNBC's Chris Matthews: and

TWEET OF THE DAY: "Fact: Bowling Green is NYC's oldest park, and to our knowledge, massacre-free since its founding in 1733" -- @Biedersam, NYC Parks Dept. spokesman:

FACT-CHECK OF THE DAY: "There is zero truth to this. I repeat: zero." -- NYPD spokesman Donald, responding to a report on Twitter that police were checking passengers' immigration status on a bus in Chinatown:

ON THIS DAY in 1964 -- Approximately 460,000 New York City public school students refuse to go to school to protest school segregation. More on the boycott from WNYC:

GLICK'S PICK: We asked Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, the Legislature's resident football expert (now that Bill Stachowski is gone) for a Super Bowl prediction, because why not. "It's hard to bet against Brady, but Atlanta has as many offensive weapons as the Pats and Ryan's on fire," she said. "If I had to bet, it would be on Atlanta." Final score? Patriots 28, Falcons 34.

GOOD LUCK! -- per a release: "Congressmen Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) and Tom Reed (NY-23) were elected Co-Chairs of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus." Rep. Tom Suozzi (NY-3) was among those elected a vice chair.

GULP! -- "Elevated lead levels in water at Manhattan high school for gifted students" -- Daily News' Laura Dimon and Ben Chapman: "Lead in drinking water may threaten students and staffers at a high-profile Manhattan school for gifted kids, as well as a number of other public schools. Education Department officials discovered elevated levels of the toxic metal in seven of 144 water sources tested at New Explorations into Science, Technology and Math, also known as NEST+m. The discovery was made in January as part of the city's ongoing testing of water in public schools. ... NEST+m, on the Lower East Side, enrolls 1,739 of the city's top students in kindergarten through 12th grade. ... All seven of the water sources cited in the letter tested well above the city's action threshold of 15 micrograms of lead per liter. ... Education Department officials said no case of lead poisoning has ever been traced to water from a city school."

CENTRALIZING THE JUDGES - POLITICO New York's Jimmy Vielkind: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing to consolidate hundreds of hearing officers and administrative judges into a new state agency, according to budget documents. He says the move will increase efficiency, but not everybody sees it that way. The Democratic governor wants to create a Division of Central Administrative Hearings, which will put approximately 580 administrative law judges currently spread across 20 state agencies in one place. The idea, Cuomo aides say, is to better balance the caseload of administrative law judges and have them start to oversee hearings on a variety of subjects. Now, the judges specialize by agency, hearing everything from tax challenges, workers' compensation claims and welfare appeals. "An office independent of other agencies will result in a more impartial and efficient hearing process, a more skilled workforce, and possible cost savings," said Morris s, a spokesman for the Budget Division. "This new structure will be more adaptable to provide flexibility in caseload management and address backlogs when needed."


-- New York Times CEO Mark Thompson threw the latest punch in the paper of record's ongoing brawl with our commander in chief. "President Trump was once again busy tweeting this weekend that our audiences and our subscribers were, to use his word, 'dwindling,'" Thompson said yesterday morning during a conference call to discuss the company's latest financial results. "Well, not so much, Mr. President." Thompson then outlined the Times' significant digital subscriber growth during the final three months of 2016, when the Times was aggressively covering the election and the transition, often stoking Trump's ire. "Perhaps the new president was referring to the New Year and guessing that there had been a post-election lull. If so, wrong again. ... We are continuing to see remarkably strong numbers of new subscribers." More in my story from yesterday:

-- "If there is one thing President Donald Trump loves to talk about, it's numbers -- specifically the TV ratings he draws when he appears on news programs and the size of the crowds that attended his rallies or inauguration," POLITICO's Alex Weprin writes. "Trump, who has dominated the news with his 'American carnage' address and immigration ban, has without question been a ratings draw. But so too was President Barack Obama in 2009, assuming office in a time of economic free-fall. Now that January's ratings are on the books, POLITICO looked back to that year to try and see who had the more closely watched first days in office." Click through for the results:

-- "Two small Facebook investors filed a shareholder resolution on Thursday formally asking the social media giant to issue a report about the impact that 'fake news' is having on the company and society. Arjuna Capital and Baldwin Bros. filed the shareholder resolution in collaboration with OpenMIC, a nonprofit organization ... that works with investors on net neutrality and digital privacy issues. The shareholder resolution cites a Pew report that found that 64 percent of Americans are confused by fake news stories and a Buzzfeed story which found that fake news headlines were more popular than real news stories on Facebook. The resolution warns that the prevalence of fake news on Facebook poses a number of risks to the company."

You can read the full Morning Media column and sign up to receive it in your inbox by clicking here:

CUOMO'S OPEN ARMS: Later on Thursday, the governor tweeted an article from The Oregonian about an Iranian baby in need of heart surgery who has been held up by President Donald Trump's immigration order. "Here's the consequence of this un-American policy. An exception should be made," Cuomo wrote. "If OR has issue, NY will provide care." The governor's spokesman, Rich Azzopardi, later reinforced: "The pain and damage of this flawed federal policy is especially repulsive in this case of preventing a child from getting life saving treatment. If the plane lands in New York the governor will personally make sure the child gets the health care she needs. New York and America does not let children die because we deprived them of healthcare."

JEFFRIES' TRANSLATION -- POLITICO'S Edward Isaac-Dovere: "Rep. Hakeem Jeffries doesn't think there's much doubt about how to describe President Donald Trump's executive order on vetting immigrants and travelers. "It absolutely is a Muslim ban," he said, in an interview for Season 2 of POLITICO's "Off Message" podcast.

Jeffries, a New York Democrat, was one of the members of Congress who rushed to his local airport last weekend, mediating between people who were trying to find out what happened to relatives who'd been detained and Customs and Border Protection officers who wouldn't talk to them. "Every single family member conducted themselves with such grace and dignity and respect for this country and the rule of law under fire," Jeffries said. "I only wish that we would see such grace, dignity and respect from some of the folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue."

Jeffries isn't impressed with the explanations out of the White House since. "I think it was Sean Spicer, who is the White House press secretary who said this was a temporary inconvenience," Jeffries said. "Let him be subjected or let his family members be subjected to this type of so-called temporary inconvenience and then report back to the American people about how problematic is it."

2017: GOP mayoral candidate Paul Massey boxes, but can he go the distance? -- NY1's Grace Rauh: "Paul Massey is preparing to compete. In the boxing ring, where he spars a few days a week. And in the political ring, where he is challenging Mayor Bill de Blasio. When asked whether he thinks politics or boxing will be tougher, Massey says boxing. 'Boxing pushes you right to the limit,' he said. ... In a city where registered Democrats outnumber Republicans 6 to 1, Massey has a long fight ahead of him. And with President Donald Trump in the White House and New Yorkers marching in opposition, the climate seems particularly ill-suited for a multimillionaire from the world of real estate. Some may also question Massey's New Yorker street cred. He built his commercial real estate business here, but he lived in tiny Larchmont in Westchester and only moved to Manhattan in 2015. 'No one can out-New York me. I've spent 30 years in every neighborhood in this city,' he said."

MORE TRANSPORT DATA REQUIRED -- POLITICO New York's Conor Skelding: Black cars, including those run by ride-hail apps like Uber and Lyft, will have to provide the city with more trip data under a rule passed by the city Taxi & Limousine Commission on Thursday. Bases will need to report every ride's drop-off locations and times, in addition to pick-up data. They'll also need to indicate whether a trip is shared, which would include services like Uber Pool and Lyft Line. Uber, other car-hail apps, and privacy advocates had opposed the measure, saying the data would be vulnerable to breach by hackers and mission creep by other government bodies. The TLC said the rule will help prevent drivers from working too many hours, as well as support other enforcement and policy planning efforts. The commission passed the rule unanimously.

POLICE WATCHDOG DEFENDS AGENCY -- POLITICO New York's Azi Paybarah: Responding to questions raised in the press and by elected officials, the head of the board that investigates accusations of police misconduct denied that City Hall or any other agency rewrites reports before they are published. "[U]nder the leadership of this Board, the Agency is the sole author and editor of its reports," Maya Wiley, chair of the Civilian Complaint Review Board, wrote to Councilman Dan Garodnick in a Feb. 2 letter shared with POLITICO New York. Wiley's letter came in response to a Jan. 30 letter from Garodnick to the board, asking about the role City Hall played in shaping a report the board released in December about the NYPD's use of Taser stun guns. ... In his letter, Garodnick charged that the report "was moderated by the influence of City Hall and the NYPD." -- READ THEM -- Garodnick's Letter: -- And Wiley's Response:

AT THE MUSEUM -- "The Met wins admission charge lawsuit, but lawyer may rack up $350K," by The Post's Julia Marsh: "The big winner from a lawsuit against the Metropolitan Museum of Art over its recommended $25 admission charge is the plaintiffs' lawyer - who is seeking a staggering $350,000 fee for handling a case that resulted in a nonmonetary settlement. A Manhattan Supreme Court judge will consider the amount following a March hearing, but the museum has already signed off, calling the fee 'not unreasonable' in court papers. A New Yorker and two tourists sued in 2013 claiming the museum was legally barred from accepting admission money according to an original 1878 lease. The settlement, reached last June, simply makes a semantic change on museum signage that will now refer to its $25 admission as 'suggested' instead of 'recommended.' The three named plaintiffs will get a nominal $1,000 each for their participation in the yearslong case."

EAT BEAT -- "DC's Hottest Restaurant Rose's Luxury Will Be in NYC for One Night Only," by Eater's Serena Dai: "The chef behind a nationally acclaimed, impossible-to-get-into DC restaurant will be making an appearance in Brooklyn for one night only next week. Aaron Silverman of Rose's Luxury is cooking with fellow neighborhood restaurant star Olmsted and its chef Greg Baxtrom in Prospect Heights on Monday, Febraury 6th. ... Doors open at 5 p.m. at 659 Vanderbilt Ave., between Park Place and Prospect Place."

ON STAGE -- "The Hudson Theater Is Back on Broadway," by NYT's Erik Piepenburg: "One of Broadway's oldest surviving theaters is now its youngest. When the Hudson Theater reopens on Saturday, Feb. 11 - with Jake Gyllenhaal adding star power to the revival of 'Sunday in the Park With George' - it becomes Broadway's 41st and newest playhouse, 114 years after it became one of Broadway's first. (It opened with a production of 'Cousin Kate' starring Ethel Barrymore.) Located on 44th Street just east of Broadway, the ornate theater has led a life as various as Manhattan itself, with stints as a TV studio (1950s), a reborn legit theater and then a porn palace ('60s), a rock venue ('80s), and, for the last 20 years, an event space for Millennium Hotels. Then there was the Andy Warhol moment, coinciding with his 1967 movie 'Bike Boy.' As The New York Times put it in a review: 'It opened yesterday at the Hudson Theater. It belongs in the Hudson River.' Today, however, after a renovation by the Ambassador Theater Group of Britain that was estimated to run $10 million before it started, the Hudson is ready to be a showplace again, and in turn to become that New York rarity: a new Broadway house. (Ambassador officials declined to provide the final cost.)"

REAL ESTATE, with POLITICO New York's Sally Goldenberg:

--"Islanders Are on Roll, but Their Future at Barclays Center May Be in Doubt," by New York Times' Filip Bondy: "Since firing Coach Jack Capuano in January, the Islanders have won five of six games, including a 3-2 victory over the first-place Washington Capitals on Tuesday. They have moved from last place in the N.H.L.'s Eastern Conference to 3 points out of a playoff position. But they can't seem to escape discussion of their uncomfortable marriage with Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where the team has played the last two seasons. A deadline looms at the end of this year to renegotiate the Islanders' lease, and the team appears limited to three imperfect options: return to a renovated Nassau Coliseum, build a new arena in a resistant city neighborhood, or convince Barclays Center that the team is still a viable commodity."

-- "Price tag of Javits Center expansion jumps by half a billion dollars," by Crain's Joe Anuta: "State officials pegged the cost of the Jacob K. Javits Center expansion at $1.55 billion in an announcement this week, more than a half-billion more than what Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced in his State of the State speech last year. In January 2016, Cuomo included a $1 billion redevelopment of the convention center as part of his annual address describing his budget priorities. The additional 1.2 million square feet of exhibit and meeting space would make the Javits Center more competitive with similar destinations around the country, and likely put it in the nation's top 10 by size."

-- "Community Blindsided by Tentative HUD Support for Senior Relocation Plan," by DNAinfo's Allegra Hobbs: "Elected officials and community members were blindsided Monday by news that property owners had already received a letter of conditional support from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to relocate more than a dozen elderly residents to accommodate the construction of a neighboring tower. According to letters obtained by The Lo-Down, Victor Papa of Two Bridges Neighborhood Council and Alexa Sewell of Settlement Housing Fund wrote to HUD officials in November 2016 asking the agency to sign off on the temporary relocation of up to 19 seniors who live at 80 Rutgers Slip while the JDS Development Group builds a 77-story tower over the senior building."

You can find the free version of Sally's real estate newsletter here:

BIRTHDAYS --Friday: Diana Hartstein Beinart, deputy commissioner and general counsel of NYC's Dept. of Finance and an Obama WH alum ... Richard Steier, editor of the Chief-Leader ... Fred Hochberg, former chairman at Export-Import Bank of the U.S. ... Columbia 2L Janet Kanzawa, a Simpson Thacher & Bartlett alum (h/t Colby Bermel) ... DEC flack Kevin Frazier

-- Saturday: Assemblymen Denny Farrell and Ray Walter ... Sarah FitzRandolph Brown, chief of staff at Tech:NYC ... Ana Maria Cruz Tobon, strategic campaigns director at 32BJ SEIU [via Facebook] ... Ken Frydman, veteran communications expert and former journalist ... and famed civil rights activist, the late Rosa Parks ...

-- Sunday: historian Harold Holzer ... Marshall Project reporter Alysia Santo ... Dean Meminger, criminal justice reporter at NY1 ... DNAInfo's Nicole Levy ... Thomas Shanahan, veteran attorney based in Manhattan ... and Trayvon Martin, an unarmed teenager whose fatal shooting in 2012 by George Zimmerman sparked protests across the country

THE HOME TEAMS -- POLITICO New York's Howard Megdal: The day ahead: the Pacers come to Barclays. The Islanders are in Detroit.

#UpstateAmerica: Lake George's annual winter carnival begins this weekend amid a complication - the lake isn't fully frozen.

FOR MORE political and policy news from New York, check out Politico New York's home page:

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