Topic Options
#1163487 --- 03/24/10 03:43 PM NY Democrats' $50000 Pay to Play plan
newsman38 Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 03/21/01
Posts: 4947
Loc: Fourth Estate
Albany Dems offer labor seats at table - for 50G

ALBANY — Democrats in the state Senate are up for sale — and they don’t come cheap!

The Capitol’s scandalous “pay to play” culture descended to a new low as Democratic lawmakers told top labor leaders that they would have to pony up $50,000 each in donations if they want special access, The Post has learned.

In a shocking letter to union bosses who are battling state budget cuts, state Sen. Jeff Klein of The Bronx offered to sell them "chairmanships" on a newly created "Labor Advisory Council."

"Advisory Council chairs will have the unique opportunity to advise the Senate Dems on the structure and focus of the Labor Advisory Council," says the letter from Klein, chairman of the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee.

"In addition to all meetings, conferences and events that are included with Advisory Council membership, the advisory chairs will be invited to an exclusive meeting with the Senate majority leaders," the letter states.

It also promises that Advisory Council members "will actively participate in the essential policy conversations that help construct our 2010 campaign strategy."

All state lawmakers are up for re-election this year, and the Democrats' narrow control of the state Senate hangs in the balance.

For labor leaders unwilling to kick in $50,000, Klein offered a second-tier "general membership" at $25,000 apiece.

"This is 'pay to play' run amok," said a longtime Democratic activist. "In the current climate of Albany as an ethical cesspool, how could they be so blatant?"

Klein's pitch for contributions stunned New York Public Interest Research Group Legislative Director Blair Horner.

"Wow, it's rare to see something so brazen where the Senate leadership is giving unique access to powerful interest groups for $50,000 each, giving them a seat at the table that no one else gets," Horner said.

Klein's letter was sent as Senate Democrats hinted they might be willing to drop their support for $2 billion in state education aid and health care cuts that are strongly opposed by the teachers and health care workers unions.

One labor leader who received the letter called it "a little crazy."

Klein said the letter was "a fund-raising tool" but conceded it would give the labor leaders "an opportunity to have face time with the leadership" of the Senate.


Last Updated: 4:31 AM, March 24, 2010

#1163636 --- 03/24/10 08:12 PM Re: NY Democrats' $50000 Pay to Play plan [Re: newsman38]
HarleyBobT Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 08/22/08
Posts: 5106
Loc: Walloon Freedom Fighter
My country is turning into a third world banana Republic before my very eyes.
Kristin Davis for NY State Governor,a hard working girl and the hottest candidate NY has ever seen.

#1164039 --- 03/25/10 04:17 PM Re: NY Democrats' $50000 Pay to Play plan [Re: HarleyBobT]
Greymane Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 11/09/06
Posts: 6848
Loc: Central PA
Well, you know what happens in those banana republics. Those power mongers get changed like underwear (and not in a good way). It is time to start running people out of Albany on a rail. I think we should send Josephus to Albany. I know he leans left, but he has more common sense in his pinky than you can find in all of Albany.
Against logic there is no armor like ignorance. - Dr. Lawrence J. Peter