Streams

Four Senate Democrats bolt, form Indy Dem Caucus

Wednesday, January 05, 2011 - 11:05 AM

Four Democratic State Senators bolted from their caucus and will form an "Independent Democratic Caucus," decrying what they say were corruption and "hyper-partisanship" under the leadership of their former leader, John Sampson.

The four senators, Jeff Klein, Diane Savino, David Valesky and freshman David Carlucci, say they will vote against Sampson becoming the senate leader, and against his Republican counterpart, Dean Skelos.

Klein said he spoke to Governor Cuomo, a Democrat, just before making the announcement, and said the governor was "supportive" of their legislative efforts.

"This is about the present Democratic leadership," said Klein.

"Senator Sampson has failed to move forward a legislative agenda when he was the Majority Conference Leader that New Yorkers cared about and now in the minority. I do no believe he will be able to make a compelling argument as to why the Democrats should be returned to power," Klein said.

It's worth noting that Sampson was among the people criticized in a recent Inspector General's report about unseemly lobbying practices surrounding the Racino deal last year.

"We are prepared to work with anyone," said Savino. "Albany is broken. We all know it. We're a national laughing stock."

When asked if they'd accept campaign money from the New York State Senate Democratic Campaign Committee, Savino joked, "there's no money to take." She and Klein said they'd both donated more to that campaign committee than they've received in return.

Savino denied this group was similar to the four Democratic State Senators who banded together two years ago, threatening to buck the leadership of then-leader Maclolm Smith. That group, dubbed the "four amigos" was more interested in empowering themselves, Savino said.

Tags:

More in:

News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
Get the best of WNYC in your inbox, every morning.

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.

Sponsored

"The Capitol Pressroom" with Susan Arbetter at 11 am

For show archives, please visit The Capitol Bureau's website here.

About The Empire

Everything you need to know about New York politics and governance. We aim for a ground-up approach to politics, reverse engineered to make the effect just as important as the players and the game they play. From the Long Island to The Thousand Islands, New York City Hall to the Capitol Building, The Empire's got you covered.

Check out WNYC's 2013 Mayor Tracker--the one-stop shop for info about the candidates, issues and trends in the upcoming New York City mayoral election.

 

Our Reporters

Feeds

Supported by