Governor Paterson's security force has doubled from 100 to 200 officers since he took office in March 2008, and some critics say he's expanded the detail just to make himself look more important. "The governor wants to have an entourage—three or four cars—wherever he goes because he thinks it makes him look more gubernatorial, it helps him politically," one unidentified "senior official" tells the Post. Now the State Troopers Police Benevolent Association is calling Paterson out for draining police manpower at a time when he's cut the state police force to battle the budget monsters.

"They've taken what had been an elite, highly sought-after position and made it into a detail where people are actually being drafted into it who don't want to go," PBA spokesman Gordon Warnock said. "It's ridiculous that when we only have 150 troopers patrolling all of Long Island, he has over 200 troopers assigned to him. It's really amazing."

But a spokesman for the Governor insisted that though Paterson's security detail is larger than his predecessor Eliot Spitzer, it's still smaller than what it was under Pataki, whose guards sometimes carried submachine guns. The spokesman accused the PBA of "trying to score political points against the governor for making the tough calls—special interests whose appetite for increased spending is responsible in part for the state's fiscal crisis."