Speaking of other shoes dropping... As Governor Paterson concluded a rare meeting with at least 50 agency and department chiefs in the Capitol’s ornate Red Room today, he was served with a letter from the Commission on Public Integrity informing him that he violated the "public officers law" when he personally solicited tickets to the opening game of the World Series last year, which he attended at Yankee Stadium with his son and troublesome aide David Johnson. You may recall David Johnson, or "D.J." from such recent scandals as Domestic Violence Silence and DJing Bull.
In addition to violating the state’s ban on gifts to public officials, the commission determined that Paterson falsely testified under oath that he had intended to pay for the tickets. Paterson only paid for the tickets after the infernal media started in with their accursed "questions," and when he did so, the check was deceptively backdated. The tickets, with a face value of $425 each, were for seats just a few rows behind home plate. When asked this morning what he intended to say to his cabinet, Paterson predicted: "That this isn’t an end, this is a beginning."
The case has been referred to the Albany DA and the state Attorney General's office. According to the Times, "state law forbids officials in the executive branch from soliciting or accepting gifts of more than nominal value from any lobbyist if the gift appears intended to sway the official. The Yankees organization is registered to lobby the Paterson administration, as well as the State Legislature, in connection with financing for the stadium." He could be fined a maximum of $90,000.
Despite all this, new Marist poll released yesterday found 66 percent of voters surveyed want Paterson to finish his term, compared to 28 percent who want him to resign. But at the same time, 62 percent don't believe he can continue to be an effective leader. Luckily for him, State Senator Pedro Espada, Jr. had some pearls of wisdom for Paterson yesteray, telling reporters the governor should "do what Pedro does: Report to work; don't listen to and read everything that's said about you; stay compartmentalized; stay focused on the job." Hmmm, taking Espada's advice on surviving scandals... so crazy it just might work!