ALBANY -- In the fight over control of New York’s Senate, a pair of history lessons were offered Tuesday.
Senate co-leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) in an “open letter to New York” warned against turning over full control of the chamber to “a small, radical faction of avowed leftists.”
By 2011, after a two-year reign by Democrats, Skelos said: “That Democrat majority had run up a staggering $10 billion deficit.
“New York City Democrats were fresh off of raising 124 taxes and fees to the tune of $14 billion -- including the job-killing MTA payroll tax, an onerous new tax on energy, and elimination of the important STAR property tax rebate checks for seniors and homeowners,” Skelos stated.
The current Democratic conference in the Senate, which shed many of the members of the 2008-2010 body, turned the calendar back even further.
“The Republicans have controlled the Senate for over 50 years and that has resulted in higher taxes, a crippled upstate economy, out-of-control mandates and a state Senate that lacked transparency and accountability,” said Senate Democratic spokesman Michael Murphy.
“It is clear that the Republicans and their leadership have been corrupted and now is the time for change,” Murphy said.
The themes will be repeated often to voters this fall. Republicans are now part of a historic coalition with five breakaway Democrats who form the Independent Democratic Conference.
A half-dozen or so close races will decide whether Democrats can win enough seats to create a majority on their own, or if Repulicans will win enough votes to retain at least a share of majority control.
In Albany, the majority controls legislation, spending and resources for members.