Steven Cohen was Andrew Cuomo’s right arm for five years until he left the job of “secretary” to the governor in June. (Before that Cohen served as chief of staff while Cuomo was NY AG.). In that last job he oversaw the push to legalize same-sex marriage in New York, which was the subject of most of our conversation on yesterday’s radio while Mr. Cohen was visiting Chapman University School of Lawl.
We did talk a bit about his old boss and the soon-to-be-open job of Vice President:
HH: Now I have gone out there, I’ve taken some odds on this bet, but with some pretty senior people, predicting and betting that he will be replacing Joe Biden on the ticket in 2012. What do you think the odds of that are?
SC: I wouldn’t put it high. You’ve got to understand the person we’re dealing with. On the one hand, look, if somebody asked him to take a position of that kind, you know, first and foremost, he believes in this country. And if he’s asked to serve, he has a hard time saying no. But with that aside, he has been governor for now ten and a half months, which is a blink of an eye. I think he feels an obligation to the state of New York, a deep obligation. And remember, we have been through, he is the fourth governor in I think something like three years. And it is destabilizing to keep changing governors, through whatever the reason. So for that reason alone, he would be very reluctant to consider something that would cause him to not devote his full time and attention to the state of New York.
HH: But Steven, if the president of the United States says I’m sending Joe Biden to State to replace Hillary, nice edge aside, because I’m dying out here politically, and I’m going to lose 48 states unless I turn this around, the country needs you, I need you…he’s going to say yet, isn’t he?
SC: I think I began by saying he believes in this country, and he believes that when you’re asked to serve, you have to serve. So if it were to occur in that manner, you may have something.
Mr. Cohen isn’t the only one to have obviously thought through the need and the solution. Watch for his reservation in Charlotte.
And read the whole thing for a glimpse inside the thinking of the same-sex marriage debate’s most able fixer. Note especially how the expected level of opposition from the Roman Catholic Church failed to materialize.