Even after a state ethics report criticized him for covering up allegations of sexual harassment against a powerful assemblyman, even after a prosecutor said his failure to act might have put other women at risk, even after a number of editorial boards called for his ouster, Mr. Silver is still standing strong.
Silver enjoys unflagging loyalty in the Assembly because he gives free rein to Democrats, the Times reports. Ethics enforcement is lax and assembly seats remain safe thanks to Silver’s extensive networks and big campaign war chest. In return, Democrats, including Governor Andrew Cuomo, protect him in crises like these.This isn’t the first time a scandal like this has been swept under the rug:
Almost a decade ago, [Silver] was accused of mishandling accusations against one of his former top aides, J. Michael Boxley. The Assembly paid a $500,000 settlement in that case, and the two women who accused Mr. Boxley of assaults subsequently lent their support to one of Mr. Silver’s primary challengers in 2008.“It’s shocking that the members of the Assembly are willing to give him a free pass and not hold him accountable,” said Sonia Ossorio, the president of the New York City chapter of the National Organization for Women. She added that he was guilty of “allowing this environment of sexual harassment to fester over the years.”
The story fits into a broader pattern in blue states: From Michigan to California, Illinois to New York State, the blue machine spouts pretty promises but in reality it’s all about money and power, the little people be damned. More often than not, this kind of behavior is met with a deafening silence from the MSM and the broader blue establishment. We’re happy to see the New York Times taking up the cudgel here.[Sheldon Silver image courtesy of Wikimedia]