Leaders Demanding Resignation or Removal

State Senator Liz Krueger
State Senator David Valesky
State Senator Neil Breslin
State Senator Suzi Oppenheimer
State Senator Daniel Aubertine
State Senator Brian X. Foley
State Senator Martin Golden
State Senator Frank Padavan
State Senator Catharine Young
State Senator Betty Little
State Senator Jeff Klein
State Senator Bill Perkins
State Senator Thomas Duane
State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins
State Senator Jim Seward
State Senator Craig Johnson
State Senator Tom Libous
State Senator Daniel Squardon
State Assemblywoman Patricia Eddington
State Assemblywoman Amy Paulin
State Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther
State Assemblywoman Francine DelMonte
State Assemblyman Adriano Espaillat
State Assemblywoman Vivian Cook
State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver
US Senator Charles Schumer
US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand
Mayor Michael Bloomberg
City Comptroller Bill Thompson
Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum
Congressman Joseph Crowley
Congressman Eric Massa
Congressman John Hall
Congresswoman Louise Slaughter
NYS Democratic Party Chair Jay Jacobs
City Council Member Eric Gioia
City Council Member Bill deBlasio
City Council Member Annabel Palma
City Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito
City Council Member John Liu
Dan Halloran, City Council candidate
District Leader Marc Landis
District Leader John Smyth
District Leader Keith Lilly
District Leader Cordell Cleare
Democratic Party of Queens County
National Organization for Women, New York State
NARAL Pro-Choice New York
The New Agenda
Eleanor Roosevelt Legacy Committee
NYC Alliance Against Sexual Assault
New York State Young Democrats
National Women's Political Caucus, NY State
New York Post
New York Daily News
Albany Times Union Newspaper
Watertown Daily Times Newspaper
The Chief, Civil Employee's Weekly News
The Buffalo News
Queens Courier
New York Times
Journal News of Lower Hudson Valley
Queens Chronicle
Oneonta Daily Star
Troy Record
to be added to this list, email me at:

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Newsday: State Senate Should Police Its Own

The State Senate must know it has an image problem. It's taken a welcome step toward addressing it by appointing a committee to consider discipline or expulsion for Sen. Hiram Monserrate (D-Jackson Heights). Tried for a vicious attack on his girlfriend, the senator was convicted on a misdemeanor assault charge - for what we all saw on a disturbing videotape. He should face his colleagues' doubts about his qualifications to serve. Representing the people is a privilege, not a right.

Had Monserrate been found guilty of the felony charges originally brought against him, he would have lost his seat automatically. Both he and his girlfriend, Karla Giraldo, claimed the incident was an accident, leaving a judge little choice but to convict on the lesser charge. Either way, Giraldo ended up with nearly 40 stitches on her face.

So far, numerous Democratic officeholders have called on Monserrate to resign. Maybe the anti-incumbent sentiment in New York has correctly convinced them to police their own.

If the Senate doesn't act, voters will have their say next year. But New York elections seem all but rigged in incumbents' favor. Just getting on the ballot requires a team of legal experts. Campaign finance rules on the state level allow virtually limitless donations - favoring officeholders over challengers. Name recognition, safe districting and member-item cash to spread around the community put a virtual lock on an incumbent's chances.

Until lawmakers can re-tilt this playing field, they need to enforce some standards.

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