Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Gubernatorial Update (He's right about Mets)

When we first checked in with New York State Governor David A. Paterson, he had announced in the wake of scandal that he would not run for re-election, was grappling with the legislature over the then 45-days late budget, and predicted the Mets would have a .500 season. Eighty days later, the New York State legislature completed a budget yesterday. The final piece of legislation took measures to raise an additional $1 billion. A spokesperson for Governor David A. Paterson called the budget "fiscally responsible" noting, "This was done primarily through spending cuts and with no new borrowing." The latest state budget ever passed was approved on August 11, 2004 and state lawmakers feared (further?) public scorn by setting a new record.

Yesterday also marked a new phase in the scandal over how Governor Paterson and associates acted after one of his top aides was involved in an allegedly physical domestic dispute. An independent investigation by Judith S. Kaye, the former chief judge of the New York State Court of Appeals, concluded last week that the governor and other officials made errors of judgement but those errors did not warrant criminal prosecution. Other investigations and actions, in abeyance pending Judge Kaye's findings, have now resumed.

These included a state ethics commission probe into the conduct of Major Charles Day. The victim of the alleged domestic violence testified in Judge Kaye's investigation that Major Day, the head of the governor's security detail, contacted her on the night of the altercation and urged her to let the State Police handle the matter internally. The acting superintendent of the State Police yesterday transferred Major Day to the division of traffic services.

As the state legislature finalized the budget and the State Police transferred Major Day to a new command, the Mets record stood at 53-53, consistent with Governor Paterson's prediction on WFAN on May 15. With a third of the season remaining, the Mets are 7.5 games behind the Braves and 5.5 back of the Phillies. The Giants are the current wild card leader with a record better than any team in the National League East.

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