It's Cuomo's Responsibility to Challenge Silver

Statement on Gov. Cuomo's Refusal to Challenge Speaker Silver from Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor (R,C,I - Fishkill)

“Governor Cuomo has failed as a leader by refusing to challenge Speaker Silver. Cuomo claims that it’s not his place to say whether or not Silver should remain as Speaker. Cuomo is wrong. He is the governor and the leader of his state’s political party. In those roles, it is his place to demand reform. It’s his job. It’s his responsibility. He can’t walk away from it.

“Clearly, Silver holds all of the real power in Albany if the governor is unable to challenge him. We will never reform Albany if Cuomo doesn’t have the courage to stand up to Silver. Silver stands in the way of reform. Silver even blocked a bill in committee that would have taken pensions away from politicians convicted of felonies. He has to go.

“Cuomo needs to take a stand. He can’t pass real reform legislation with Silver at the helm. He can’t claim to support women’s rights and stand by Silver. Silver has tolerated corruption for years. He tolerated and covered for Vito Lopez’s misogynistic harassment. The first step Cuomo needs to take for political reform and women’s rights is to call for Silver’s resignation. If he doesn’t, he is either a hypocrite or lacks the political power to do it. Neither possibility speaks well of the governor’s leadership.

“If Cuomo refuses to act, the Assembly majority need to remove Silver. Almost all of the Assembly majority voted for Silver as Speaker in January, justifying their votes by saying that the investigations were not finished. The investigations are now complete. We know Silver enabled Lopez. Cuomo should demand that Silver be removed and the Assembly majority needs to do it.”