the governor, Cuomo wanted to delay his decision until after the gubernatorial reelection campaign.
Right up to the end of the legislative session in early July, supporters of the Silver-Tully bill calling for mandatory counseling and voluntary testing believed their bill would pass in the final hours. Even Mayersohn had accepted the likelihood of her opponents' bill passing. "I left at midnight [on the last night of the legislative session] thinking this would pass. [Newsday columnist] Dwyer called me the next morning to say the bill wasn't introduced. It was never put up for a vote. That left an opening for our bill to be reintroduced in the 1995 session." Mayersohn harbored no illusions as to the impact of the upcoming gubernatorial elections. "With Pataki, I had no doubt that if he won we would see a different force at work. The activists would not have the same influence they had under Cuomo."
In November 1994, George Pataki narrowly defeated Mario Cuomo for governor.
Shortly after Pataki assumed office, he held to one of his campaign promises to limit government by placing a moratorium on the promulgation of any new regulations. Ironically, this included the Department of Social Services' effort to create permanent rules for the HIV testing of foster children after its emergency rule making of 1994. The Association to Benefit Children felt that its negotiated victory was in jeopardy and began preparing another lawsuit. In mid-March, ABC sued the governor on behalf of "Baby Girl" seeking routine HIV testing for all newborns, and treatment and counseling for all HIV-positive infants, mothers, and other family members. Mayersohn had encouraged the lawsuit, since she felt it would help advance the cause of mandatory testing. The HIV Law Project, a legal advocacy group representing HIV-infected women, petitioned the court to be added as a "defendant-intervenor" since it felt that the state would not adequately represent its own interest in maintaining the voluntary testing program, given the campaign statements of both Pataki and Attorney General Dennis Vacco.
There was little doubt as to the new administration's agenda concerning newborn testing. When Pataki's nominee for health commissioner, Dr. Barbara DeBuono, commented in an appointment hearing that she supported voluntary testing over mandatory testing approaches, Mayersohn placed a call to the governor. Within a couple of days, DeBuono had reversed her position and proffered her support for pursuing mandatory newborn testing.
Actions at the federal level in the spring of 1995 were felt at the state level as well. In March, Congressmen Ackerman and Coburn introduced H.R.-1289, an amendment to the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency (CARE) Act which would require states to disclose the HIV status of newborns.