Wow. New York politics are as corrupt as they come, and never before in my lifetime has New York State had a governor for which I felt any sense of support. The first governor I remember is Hugh Carey, a true non-entity, and not a particularly visionary leader. He was followed by Mario Cuomo, a sleazy and borderline-corrupt, career politician that really did nothing for the state other than raise taxes and dig a deeper deficit. Cuomo was followed by Pataki, a nasty and sleazy career politician, that actively held the state back as he advanced in the national republican political machine.
And then there was Eliot.
Eliot was a spitfire and not only had vision, but the drive and the wherewithall to get it done. And he tried. He failed. Bridled by unbelievably lazy politicians (and I would guess rather corrupt) like Sheldon Silver and Joseph Bruno that legislate for the status quo — Eliot was ostracized from the very first day of his administration. The seemingly unstoppable force was stopped, dead in his tracks. I was disappointed but remained hopeful that Eliot would pull it together and outlast the career cronies that run New York State.
Unfortunately, he didn’t make it.
Everyone seems disappointed (or possibly more shocked). I suppose to some degree, I am too. I feel a bit betrayed, because as much as I dislike most politicians, I truly believed in Eliot, and I had very high hopes for our State. He had a vision and was laying the infrastructure–against most odds–to move a forward-looking agenda forward. That, now, is done.
I’m pleased to see our first African-American governor take office, now that Eliot has resigned, but I fear that Patterson (a long-time New York State legislator) is “business as usual.”. He’s well liked in the New York State Assembly and Senate, which can only mean one thing: he doesn’t make waves. Unfortunately, that’s not what New York needs right now.
I suppose that for the coming years, I’ll remain hopeful, but overall, I’ll remain disappointed.