ALBANY — President Barack Obama prepared to deliver a speech on the economy Tuesday, using the backdrop of a high-technology facility in Albany created out of a partnership with private enterprise and bipartisanship.
Beside him through much of the visit will be Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who made jobs and the economy part of his "new Democrat" movement in his campaign in 2010. Cuomo also shows a Democratic executive can forge a fiscally conservative agenda and work closely with Republicans, something with the president has struggled with in Washington.
"This Presidential appearance proves by inference what is wrong in Washington, by showing what is right in Albany," said Bruce Gyory, consultant to governors and a political science professor at the University at Albany.
"Gov. Cuomo has a time-tested and honored role in American politics," Gyory said. "As the most popular governor from his party in the country, Cuomo is a prized commodity for President Obama."
The speech comes a day after Obama's campaign released a new ad on the economy, the issue Republicans see as his greatest vulnerability.
The ad says the country is "coming back" after the economic meltdown caused by actions "all before this President took the oath." The ad is running in battleground states, which don't include Democrat-dominated New York.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said Obama "spends a lot of time looking backward and blaming others" for his own economic failures.
The trip is Obama's third as president to high-tech sites around Albany that are expected to be part of the nation's future economy. Tuesday he visits to the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at the University at Albany, a research and development center, in the heart of the Rust Belt state.
"It is a national example of an exciting economic partnership," said Cuomo of the effort begun under former Gov. George Pataki, a Republican. "I'm excited that he's coming here."
But what is expected to be a brief visit has some long-term impact. Cuomo is said publicly by almost everyone except himself to be interested in running for president in 2016. Being close to a president with such foreign relations experience addresses a weak spot for most governors, especially if Cuomo faces Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the former New York senator.
On Monday, Cuomo confirmed he plans to write a book about his philosophy of government and what he has accomplished and hopes for the state. Such books have often been written by politicians to support a presidential campaign.
Cuomo is one of the nation's most popular governors and President Bill Clinton's former housing secretary. He also plans to campaign for Obama after saying two weeks ago that he was unsure if he would. That could be a critical way to get Obama to big-money political donors in Manhattan, while Cuomo is counting on a $2 billion loan from the federal government to fund a top priority, replacement of the Tappan Zee Bridge.
"I will support the president however they want me to support the president," Cuomo said Monday. "I want to be as helpful as I can be."