Who's up and who's down this week?

Who were the week's biggest Winners & Losers in New York politics? Ken Lovett? David Weprin? Charles Hynes? You decide.

Grey box with words "Winners & Losers" written in black

Grey box with words "Winners & Losers" written in black

Powerful decision-makers have huddled together behind closed doors, discussing who will win and lose, and the political world is watching, waiting … Sounds a lot like our weekly meeting to pick Winners & Losers! But at least we have women in the room. Our roundup might not be worth $168 billion, but we guarantee it’s more fun to read than budget bills.


Kevin Cottrell -

You’d have to work a lot of extra hours to get $214,835 in overtime, but that’s how much Port Authority Sgt. Kevin Cottrell got last year. That had the cop topping the list of the authority’s highest overtime earners. In fact, he actually set a new record for overtime pay at the Port Authority and walked away with a total salary of more than $400K. But all that extra time on the job begs the question: When will he have time to spend it?

Melissa DeRosa -

She’s in the room … and state Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins, the state’s first female legislative leader, is not. DeRosa, a top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, has been part of a working group to discuss changes to the state government’s sexual harassment policy. And while Stewart-Cousins’ state Senate Democrats are complaining that they have no say in the negotiations, DeRosa undoubtedly has a role as the governor’s representative in the talks.

Timothy Dolan -

While some Catholics believe in setting their minds on things that are above, the archbishop of New York has been intensely focused on such earthly matters as helping to block the Child Victims Act and trying to scuttle a proposed tax on the sale of Fidelis, which is run by Catholic bishops. What’s more, while he insisted he’s “a pastor, not a politician,” he nonetheless displayed his political clout by blasting Democrats while praising attendees of the Conservative Political Action Conference. That line about the meek inheriting the earth? So overrated.

Ken Lovett -

State police evidently did not “Lovett” when the veteran Albany reporter was talking on his phone in the lobby of the state Senate Chamber. He got arrested and sent to the Capitol lockup. But Gov. Andrew Cuomo promptly showed up for Lovett’s release, then held an impromptu press conference with the gathered press about the budget, the first one in weeks. So in exchange for a half hour behind bars, Lovett got Cuomo talking, #freekenlovett trending on Twitter, and a cupcake.

David Weprin -

Forget about the 1 percent. What about the 4 percent? That’s the share of outer borough residents who drive into Manhattan for work and would be inconvenienced by a full-fledged New York City congestion pricing plan. This fraction of city commuters are the constituents the Queens assemblyman has been fighting valiantly for, while subway riders suffer through further breakdowns and delays. With Albany taking just a tentative first step with a fee on for-hire vehicles, Weprin’s won the battle this year – even if the congestion pricing war will resume in 2019.


Charles Hynes -

Scoot over Cy Vance, there’s another prosecutor in hot water. Though former Brooklyn District Attorney Charles “Joe” Hynes was known for running an office that pumped out more wrongful convictions than the Salem Witch Trials, he made headlines this week for – finally – being fined $40,000 for failing to separate his losing 2013 reelection campaign from his official duties.

Keith Raniere -

Things can get pretty nutty in the state Capitol sometimes, but state politicians aren’t the worst actors in Albany. One individual who appears to have outdone them all is Raniere, who led a cult-like group called Nxivm that allegedly brainwashed women into becoming sex slaves and tattooed them in bizarre initiation rituals. Now it’s all catching up to him, as Raniere was arrested this week and charged with sex trafficking.

Liuba Grechen Shirley -

It’s been a bad week for women seeking input in major issues. Even though she is the only woman running in the Democratic primary to challenge Republican Rep. Peter King, Shirley did not get the Women’s Equality Party endorsement. And according to a campaign spokeswoman, the WEP didn’t even interview her before throwing its support to a male candidate, DuWayne Gregory. At least Grechen Shirley has the endorsement of former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley as a consolation prize.

Anthony Testaverde -

This Marty Golden staffer managed to cross a line even he couldn’t tolerate. Golden’s past antics – from allegedly impersonating cops, harassing bicyclists, and generally offending people – pale somewhat compared with Testeverde likening students protesting gun violence to genocidal Nazi Adolf Hitler. So, he’s fired.

Thomas Wilmot -

The owner of the del Lago Casino in the Finger Lakes went to Albany to personally lobby for state funding to bolster his business, after del Lago failed to meet projected revenues in its first year. No dice, said Cuomo and state Senate Republicans. Cuomo told reporters that “upstate gaming casinos are private concerns,” and he had no interest in “bailing out” casinos. That’s quite the reversal from a governor who once championed casinos as a game-changer for economic development upstate.