Assemblyman James N. Tedisco (R,I,C-Schenectady/Saratoga) today urged Governor Paterson to delegate his governing duties, primarily budgeting, to Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch. At last Friday’s highly anticipated press conference, Paterson announced that he will not run for re-election following an investigation into his administration’s conduct and possible interference in a staffer’s domestic violence case. Tedisco said that the situation has placed Paterson and New York State in a unique quandary, and that Ravitch could most effectively lead state government at this time.
“If Eliot Spitzer was the irresponsible governor, and Paterson is the accidental governor, it is probably safe to say that Ravitch would be the reluctant governor,” said Tedisco. “The state faces a $9 billion budget deficit and supposed ‘leaders’ in state government – the governor, assembly speaker, and senate majority leader – have yet to begin negotiating a budget that is due in one month. To say that we are in the center of a fiscal tsunami is understating the seriousness of New York’s budget dilemma.”
“It would be best for New York to avoid the ethical cloud and media circus surrounding Governor Paterson in the coming budget negotiations,” Tedisco said. “In addition, Ravitch is no stranger to rescuing beleaguered governments or public agencies. He brings with him a unique skill set that makes him well respected by both parties and could serve the state well. Finally, Ravitch already has firmly stated that he will not be running for elected office. Thus, he will be in a distinct position to do what is truly best for the state because he can ignore the calls from New York’s powerful special interest groups.”