For Assemb. Earlene Hooper, no Silver may mean no hope of grabbing the gold.

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The Hempstead Democrat is deputy speaker of the State Assembly, and while Sheldon Silver was speaker, she at least saw insider deals for her pals reach the governor's desk. She's been fighting to get the Freeport Armory donated to a nonprofit group run by a buddy, and was able to get the move approved in both chambers in 2013 and 2014 -- before Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo vetoed them. This year, though, the bill was withdrawn during an Assembly floor vote when it became clear it would not pass.

Hooper's political influence has waned. To reestablish it, she should try giving a little more attention to all of the constituents of her needy district, and the best interests of the whole state, not just the ones who are part of her personal network.