Now that Pedro G. Espada has resigned from his $120,000/year specially-created job (don't worry—he won't be paid for his few days of "work"), the spotlight has turned on some other expensive hires. The Post goes critical, reporting that "Amid the most severe fiscal crisis in recent memory and a state hiring freeze...Scratch-master Christopher Sealey was given a $120,000 salary by Senate President Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) in February to head up a five-member team dedicated to 'rebranding' the newly Democratic-controlled Senate." (The Daily News puts Sealey's salary at $100,760/year.)

Sealey, 32, was profiled in New York magazine earlier this year; he told the magazine he was "living this expense-account life of New York City luxury" and didn't care about politics, but was impressed after meeting Smith, "You look at Obama, and he created nothing short of a brand for himself. We’re not trying to create a brand (we’re already elected), but we do want better communications techniques... We’ve brought in designers who have worked for Nike, Spike TV, and HBO; we just launched a new website; and we’re getting in touch with people on Facebook and Twitter."

Senate spokesman Austin Shafran told the News, "It is very important that the Senate be able to have a continual conversation with those who we are elected to serve. Chris is one of those people who makes that possible." Well, the State Senate website does look better than the Assembly's website—when will Sheldon Silver hire a hipster of his own? And Baruch College politics professor Doug Muzzio told the AP that Sealey should be given a chance, "So he's offbeat? That's better than deadbeat and that's the perception of the body."

Still, one anonymous person has been complaining about Sealey's (private) Tweets, like "Coordinating the communications flow in the Senate. Same as doing it for Raekwon, Nike or anyone else. Stakes are higher tho." and "Hey Senate bosses …. Two words: 'Company Car'."