Everybody just has a great time at the State Fair

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and company chowing down on some Gianelli sausage.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and company chowing down on some Gianelli sausage.
The Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and company chowing down on some Gianelli sausage.

Everybody just has a great time at the State Fair

Elected leaders do their best to show how much fun they had.
August 29, 2019

The 2019 New York State Fair will end Sept. 2, but don’t worry if you’re not going to make it. The fun will live on through the social media posts of the elected leaders who have been doing their darndest to show just how much they love schlepping to Syracuse in the August heat. 

Here are some highlights.

This is the “Summer of Andrew” – haven’t you heard? 

Maybe the Legislative session didn’t end exactly as the governor would have liked – but since then, the summer has been all Andrew. The governor brought quite an appetite to the fair after a busy summer of bill signings, fishing, ziplining and bridge-opening. He replenished his strength with some milk shots and sausages as he glad-handed his way across the fair.

Amtrak is comfy – but don’t depend on it.

Cuomo may have taken the decked-out promotional Amtrak train to the fair – but he left by car. Apparently, it’s hard to cram in so much fun when the train gives you just just over an hour and a half to take in the sights.

State Sen. John Liu got to show off his pilot’s license

We get it, senator. You have the coolest ride in state politics. But aren’t you afraid that once you offer one colleague a free ride, everyone else is going to be hitting you up come January?

Cuomo isn’t the only one stuck on sausage

The governor has favored Gianelli sausage for nine years straight. Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul made sure to add her own stamp of approval before teaming up with Stewart-Cousins for a celebration of the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage.

Democrats raise a (tiny) glass with their Dear Leader

Even at the state fair, Democrats couldn’t pass up a chance to mention how much they love state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins – and 25-cent shots of milk.

Paying homage to King Dairy

New York is numero uno when it comes to the production of yogurt, cottage cheese and sour cream. While Wisconsin and California have the edge in churning out the butter, do their state fairs display such buttery goodness?

Cuomo needs to help Heastie punch up his video game

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie gets credit for showing up, but the country-tinged video his office put out just couldn’t measure up to all the baloney-related fun Cuomo was having.

Sometimes things get awkward

Just ask state Sen. Gustavo Rivera, who posted about his trip to Syracuse on Facebook, but didn’t think to hit up state Sen. Bob Antonacci, who lashed out (OK, in jest) during an appearance on “The Capitol Pressroom.” Luckily, Antonacci had another political friend to play with. 

Even when it rains, the fun continues

For some reason (maybe he’s just a sucker for huge milkshakes?), New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams decided to make an appearance. His bid for statewide office fell short last year, but he’s building up his political brand statewide – just in case. The sausage options might have been limited for the outspoken pescatarian, but the Brooklyn native put on a smile for his his upstate excursion – despite the weather.

Getting serious, too

State Attorney General Letitia James reconnected with her often overlooked upstate roots - the Brooklynite once lived in Schenectady - and showed up for a Law Enforcement Day event. The state's top prosecutor took the opportunity to reflect on her first eight months in office.

Senators MIA?

If U.S. Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand made an appearance at the state fair, they didn’t post about it in social media – the outrage! Gillibrand of course was busy with other states’ state fairs. But Schumer? WTF, this is the guy who visits every county in the state each year – who gives speeches about canned wine, Greek yogurt and cheese! Maybe they’re both going to make an appearance over Labor Day weekend. Gillibrand certainly has more time on her hands now.

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that state Attorney General Letitia James did not attend the fair. 

Zach Williams
is a staff reporter at City & State and its sister publication, New York Nonprofit Media.
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