August 31, 2012
Reposted with permission from The Brennan Center. Money in Politics is a series which regularly compiles the latest news concerning the corrosive nature of money in New York State politics — and the ongoing need for public financing and robust campaign finance reform.
New York Campaign Finance and Ethics News
1. Two recent scandals involving members of the New York State legislature
serve as egregious examples of politicians thinking they are above the law. Senator Shirley L. Huntley, D-Queens, is accused of abusing a non-profit that she created to assist parents in navigating the New York City Department of Education. Huntley and several aides were indicted this week on charges of falsifying records, tampering with evidence and grand larceny. However instead of apologizing, Huntley asserts that the case is a politically motivated attempt to reduce her chances of reelection in the upcoming Democratic primary. Similarly, Assemblyman Vito J. Lopez, D-Brooklyn, was censured by the Assembly after an investigation revealed that he had sexually harassed two female employees. A secret payment of $103,080 of tax-payer funds was authorized in June to settle a different set of sexual harassment claims against Lopez. “Taxpayers should be funding public education, not to sweep harassment charges aside for bad elected officials,” said Dick Dadey, of Citizens Union.