Monday, December 21, 2009


You all remember that our former State Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno had been convicted this past Dec 7th. Anyone paying attention knew that a conviction was inevitable at some point, we just didnt know when and to what extent. He now faces 20 years in prison and a heaping $250K fine.

Sure Joe will seek an appeal. That's protocol in these cases, but the damage is already done. What has not found it's resting place is the inevitable fallout among his colleagues that had their hands closely tied to his machine. How close his ties are to other State Senators will surely come out in the process.

The Freeman made an editorial statement last week stating that Bruno turned his state office into a
personal money-making machine that netted Bruno over $3 million in fees for dubious services. In the process, he enlisted the work of state-paid office workers, lawyers, drivers and even State Senator Bill Larkin, R-Cornwall.

The editorial went on to decry just how cynical the electorate have become. With that, legislators feel little to no pressure to change a corrupt system and when a State Senator's felony charges are rationalized to the point of "But he gave us so much money!" then you know we're in trouble.

The implication that Senator Bill Larkin had more than his share of Bruno's dealings at close hand, gives all of the voters in the 39th District a bit to consider. The grumblings on the street are that Billy Boy served a little too close to Joe on a number of pertinent cases that the Fed was investigating. Just the coincidence of the Committee Chair positions that seemed tangled with the whole race horse deal that finally took Joe down, is too much to ignore.

Letting those who'
s job it is to follow these issues to their end is all we can do at this point. It's also above my pay grade, but I have a feeling we havent seen the last of the Bruno-Larkin connection.

One additional note: Since the change in leadership in our State Senate, I think it's worth acknowledging that the member items issued to state legislators have been made public and the results are interesting for voters in the 39th District to ponder. Sen. Larkin is receiving a grand total of $250K ...ranking him 44th among all State Senators. That's about 10% of what he received when the Republicans still controlled the Senate. Ouch!

Will this mark the end of an era? Will Bill's decline in taxpayer funded gifts to influential groups in Orange and Ulster Counties spur the electorate to finally vote for change this November? Perhaps the time to ask these questions, is now. Because 2010 is just around the corner.


Anonymous said...

AND NOW we know why former-Governor Pathetic is laying so LOW!!! .... If HE pops his head out of his mole-hole again, he's going to get caught too. We can only hope the LAW will what THAT mole too!!!

Anonymous said...

am shocked he was convicted. What he did is what he did but this is politics and has always been politics and what is expected in that world in Albany. If the AG wants to do the right thing, Cuomo can get rid of 90% of our elected officials through a conviction and a jail cell.
The rules have changed and people desire punishment nowadays. Bruno got caught up in it and was in the wrong place in the wrong time zone.
It is what it is unless Cuomo decides to bring charges against all other incumbents because we all know this is Albany

Anonymous said...

I remember an article in the Record a few years back had John Bonacic saying "He's been damaged and this ongoing investigation will impair his ability to lead, he should step down as majority leader, even if it's temporary, until the cloud is removed."

Then without pause...Larkin, a member of the Senate leadership, accused Bonacic at taking a "potshot" at Bruno.

"John Bonacic can say what he wants, but I'm telling you that, not only me, but a lot of others support Joe Bruno. I'm standing behind him because I think he's doing a good job and I haven't heard anything to change my mind about him."

Ah the wonders of internet archives.

Anonymous said...

In retrospect, it now appears that Bill's comments reflect the former President' words after Katrina: "Brownie, ya did a great job".

Anonymous said...

I think they should go after Sheldon Silver while they are in the mood to investigate. Hasn't he been a longterm politician in the NYS government.?? I am sure he has some rocks that need to be upturned.

Term Limits are going to be the only way to stop corruption. You won't be there long enough to be a part of the "good ole' boy network" if you have to do your job and get out after 4 years. Besides, it is always good to bring in new fresh and creative ideas of how to bring about change in NYS. If they keep up the status quo there won't be anybody to represent with the mass exodus of people from NYS.