Republicans (and Republican wannabe Malcolm Smith) are busted for massive corruption here in New York. From NY1:
Elected officials around the city and state are speaking out and calling for more transparency over the corruption charges against State Senator Malcolm Smith, City Councilman Dan Halloran and four other political officials.
Smith and Halloran were arraigned yesterday along with Bronx Republican Party Chairman Joseph Savino, Queens Republican Party Vice Chairman Vincent Tabone, and the mayor and deputy mayor of Spring Valley in Rockland County.
All six are accused of taking part in a wide-ranging bribery scheme.
No one entered a plea and all were released on $250,000 bond.
They are due back in court on April 23.
The U.S. Attorney says Smith, a Democrat, was scheming to run for mayor on the GOP line and teamed up with Halloran, a Republican, to bribe Savino and Tabone.
Halloran apparently expected to be rewarded with a top job if Smith was elected mayor.
Smith is also accused of agreeing to steer a half-million dollars in state money to a real estate project in Spring Valley.
So Malcolm Smith decides to run for mayor as a Republican and IMMEDIATELY gets embroiled in bribery and corruption. So damned typical. It seems like you almost HAVE to be corrupt to be a Republican these days.
A recent presentation by someone I respect a great deal discussing community issues: (whole video is 1 hour but very much worth it!)
Now I turn from my own neighborhood to the wider city. Ding dong the witch is dead! Pedro Espada and "How can I miss you if you won't go away" Hiram Monserrate both lost BIG TIME.
Hiram "Slasher" Monserrate was ousted from the State Senate after slashing his girlfriend's face. Seems that's what you gotta do to be unacceptable in Albany. Well, at least they have SOME standards. Monserrate, Pedro Espada and Rubin Diaz were all at times part of the stupid coup in Albany that stopped real reform in Albany. Monserrate was ousted. Then he ran for his old seat...and lost. Now he ran for Assembly...and lost to Francisco Moya. I think we can now add to his nicknames. He isn't just "Slasher" he is also "Loser" Monserrate. I have to admit I forgot about this race when I did my endorsements. So I don't really know much about Moya. But thank god he isn't Monserrate. read more »
I am doing these columns now, in order to set the record straight and clear up some misconceptions out there. I want to believe that most of those who are seriously involved in NYC politics, know that I am an insurgent to the core. I hardly ever endorse electeds. There have been one or two exceptions over the years, but for the most part I feel strongly that most incumbents (especially the black ones) are incompetent, inept, unimaginative, trifling and corrupt. Thus I have written extensively about the need to replace most of them. Nothing has been done over the last decade to make me change this point of view. read more »
Now that some of the State Senate races are shaking out, I see two key primary races that are critical for reformers to focus on. The NY State Senate has been one of the most dysfunctional in American history. But not all State Senators are bad. My own State Senator, Velmanette Montgomery, has been a leader on many key issues, like introducing effective sex education into our schools (not currently a requirement!!) and leading on the bill (recently signed into law) that requires women prisoners to be unshakled while giving birth.
But there are key State Senators who are central to the dysfunction. Almost all of the Republicans are obstructionists who refuse to support reform in NY State. But also some Democrats are obstructionists who collaborate with the Republicans in the dysfunction. Among these obstructionist Democrats are Pedro Espada, Ruben Diaz, Shirley L. Huntley, Carl Kruger, and William Stachowski. (Getting rid of Hiram "Slasher" Monserrate was a first, very important step). If we can get rid of any or all of these losers, we will be taking a step towards genuine reform in Albany. However, not all of them have viable challengers who are worth supporting. read more »