Obama to visit Albany

President Barack Obama will be paying a visit to Albany on Tuesday to get a look at upstate New York's flourishing high-tech manufacturing sector.

But the Times-Union's Jimmy Vielkind talked to some insiders who say Obama is in the Capital to see the governor, not just a bunch of nanotubes:

Hank Sheinkopf, a Democratic political consultant, said Gov. Andrew Cuomo's lofty political standing — and whispers that he could be a presidential candidate in 2016 — are an unspoken reason for the trip.

"The President needs to win smokestack industrial states to win (another term). Albany has a population like he needs to win, and Andrew Cuomo is the kind of governor who he needs to be closer to," Sheinkopf said. While he's accelerated capital spending in an attempt to create jobs, Cuomo has held the line on government spending, negotiating austere contracts with state worker unions and cutting benefits for new public employees.

New York may be blue, writes the AP's Michael Gormley, but upstate New Yorkers look a lot like the voters Obama will be looking to woo in November:

An upstate New York appearance and planned economic speech also gives Obama a chance to try out ways to appeal to Catholics and voters in the Midwest who share a certain political and economic DNA with upstate New Yorkers.

On a practical note: A long stretch of I-90 will be closed for security reasons during the President's visit tomorrow.

From noon to 3 p.m., I-90 will be closed in both directions from Exit 24 to Exit 4.

On a less practical note: Local blog Albany Proper finds photographic evidence that an enterprising local strip club is hoping to cash in on the President's visit.