Mayor Bloomberg has traditionally controlled the schedule of events on the 9/11 anniversary ceremony, and has made a point of prohibiting elected officials from giving speeches that could benefit them politically. Speakers at the service have typically read snippets of poetry, and only Bloomberg himself has had the privilege of making his own remarks, in the form of brief reflections at the beginning and end. But sources tell the Wall Street Journal that this year, the 10th anniversary, Cuomo wants changes, and there's speculation he wants to give a speech.
Previously, the memorial service has been held on city-owned land, but this year, for the first time, the service will occur on Port Authority property, which is jointly owned by New York State and New Jersey. A source tells the Journal that Cuomo and Governor Christie are using that as leverage to pressure the mayor to loosen his grip on 9/11 Day. There will be a large national television audience for the ceremony, and multiple sources speculate that Cuomo could address the gathering with "substantive remarks."
Christie is a reportedly angling for an "extended" speaking role for his appointee as chairman of the Port Authority, David Samson. Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson denies all this, but the Journal's source insists, "The mayor does think it's all done, and Cuomo and Christie are clearly seeking changes in some ways."
If Cuomo, who is widely believed to have his eye on the White House, gets to give a speech with the teary eyes of America on him, everybody else is going to want to talk, too. Obama's got a big election coming up, so you can bet he'll orate, and George W. Bush will also be in attendance, so then we'll have to let him stammer a few maladroit words as well. It's a whole house of cards! By the time DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan finishes her speech about how bike lanes could have prevented 9/11, it's gonna be 9/12. Bring your energy bars and hemorrhoid donuts!