A Column from Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin (R,C,I-Schaghticoke)
The ongoing investigation into the Moreland Commission is another event in a long history of corruption that has besmirched New York State politics. Only in New York can an anti-corruption commission become corrupted itself. For a governor who promised to clean up Albany, Andrew Cuomo has failed miserably. I would argue he has accomplished the opposite of reform.
I am fed up with grimy politicians and political bosses running Albany as if it were their own personal empire. The establishment has done nothing but betray the public trust, make us a laughingstock among national media outlets, and refuse to act when those in their own party steal from the public coffers. It is insulting and demoralizing to the people of this state to watch their tax money padding the pockets of criminals. I will not stand idly by while low-life crooks steal from the hardworking taxpayers of New York State.
I was one of the first members of the legislature to call out Gov. Cuomo and certain members of the Assembly on corruption charges. In response to this disgusting behavior, I have introduced some of the toughest anti-corruption legislation in the history of New York State politics. I co-sponsor Assembly Bill 4935, which would strip pension and retirement benefits from those convicted of certain felonies while serving as elected officials or officers of the state.
The Public Officers’ Accountability Act, which I also sponsor, would ban those convicted of certain felonies from holding public office, require the return of campaign funds by those convicted of certain felonies, create a class of new crimes against the public trust, limit the use of campaign funds to campaign activities, and institute eight-year term limits for legislative leaders and committee chairs. Furthermore, I sponsor Assembly Bill 219, which would require the audit and forfeiture of unspent campaign contributions received by an elected official after conviction of a crime.
Current investigations into the legislature and governor’s office reflect poorly on our state and rob taxpayers of peace of mind. Those who stand by and allow these travesties to occur are no better than those who are found guilty. The people of New York deserve better, and I will continue to hold myself and other members of the legislature to a higher standard and fight for reform.
Assemblyman McLaughlin represents the 107th District, which consists of parts of Rensselaer, Columbia and Washington counties. For more information,
please visit Assemblyman McLaughlin’s campaign website.