From Day One, Republican Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano has placed the blame for the county’s finances on the shoulders of his Democratic predecessor Thomas Suozzi.
Eight years ago, Suozzi had done the same thing, blaming budget problems, and all sorts of county ills, on his Republican predecessor, Thomas Gulotta.
Business as usual in politics — although blaming your predecessor gets old quick.
But it came as somewhat of a surprise Monday when County Legis. Francis X. Becker of Lynbrook, a Republican ally of Mangano, praised him for not attacking his predecessor.
“He’s got too much class to constantly, constantly put it on Mr. Suozzi and the Democrat’s doorstep, which is where it should be,” Becker said during a raucous legislative hearing on budget-related items.
For the record:
-During his inaugural on Jan. 1st, Mangano talked about, “the severe fiscal issues we have inherited,” the budget he inherited that was “filled with one-shot temporary stopgaps,” and how “we can simply no longer afford the county government we inherited.”
-During his First State of the County speech on March 15th, he talked about how, “my predecessor tied this administration’s hands” in labor negotiations, how “the prior administration failed to address” the property tax assessment system.
-In between, Democrats joked that Mangano was blaming Suozzi for much - and so often - that if a Republican souffle collapsed, Mangano would likely blame Suozzi and the Democrats.
-The Nassau County Web pages have Mangano talking about “shocking levels of deficits inherited by the Mangano administration.”
And barely a week ago, Mangano said in a press release that, "When I took office in January, I knew I had inherited a County that had been terribly mismanaged."