Hans Pennink/ AP

Masthead Weekly 04.05.19

In five states, Democrats won a midterm trifecta, taking the governor’s office and both legislative chambers. How are they using that power? The politics writer Russell Berman reviews lessons from one state’s struggle to meet its own progressive goals.

What to Know: The New York Budget Battle

By Russell Berman

What we’re watching: New York was the biggest state where Democrats wrestled a final legislative foothold away from Republicans, and I wrote about their ambitious agenda back in December. Under Governor Andrew Cuomo, who was reelected overwhelmingly to a third term, Democratic legislators envisioned overhauling the state’s election and criminal-justice laws, legalizing recreational marijuana, enacting a state version of the DREAM Act, and tightening campaign-finance laws. This week, the governor and legislative leaders announced a major budget agreement that capped a busy three months of policy making, backroom negotiations, and no small amount of intraparty squabbling.

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