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Eye-popping federal charges allege payoffs in NYC mayoral race
Former state Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) has been under scrutiny by the federal authorities for years. The case now against him and GOP Councilman Dan Halloran and others splashes into the NYC mayor’s race but it could be seen as something else: A model of bipartisan cooperation in which funds allegedly flow from elected officials to others as well as the other way around.
From Smith spokesman Todd Shapiro:
"The Senator has record of 13 years of dedication, hard work and integrity to the people he serves in Queens.
"He has provided to the heath, safety and well-being of the almost 20 million residents in New York.
"He will be vindicated when the all the facts in the case are revealed."
Mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis, a Republican, has said he's been aware of the brewing case, in which one defendant is Queens GOP official Vincent Tabone, who is also general counsel to both Cats's Red Apple Group and the billionaire's campaign.
Catsimatidis released this statement: "The arrests this morning point to a culture of corruption that permeates our city and state. Corruption fueled by career politicians who put personal advancement before public service. "Earlier this year we learned that an investigation was underway and since that time my campaign and my business have fully cooperated with law enforcement."