Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, had some harsh words for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s corruption-busting panel today, calling its work a “fishing expedition.”
“It is important to root out corruption, but the commission we believe has exceeded its mandate and has been engaged in a fishing expedition to intimidate legislators,” Silver told reporters today. “Both the Senate and Assembly have retained counsel, and the state is spending a great deal of money to conduct this fishing expedition.”
The Legislature is battling the panel, which is made up largely of the state’s district attorneys, over its subpoenas. Since the Legislature is officially considering a part-time body, it claims it doesn’t need to reveal more details about their outside incomes.
They have argued that they disclose details about their outside business interests — as well as salary ranges — on their ethics forms each year, which was part of a 2011 deal with Cuomo.
Silver, an attorney with a powerful New York City law firm, said Cuomo’s panel hasn’t found much, citing a report it put out last December.
“So far, the greatest result they have come to is they have recommended what this conference has been saying and passing for the last 25 years: Public campaign finance in New York state,” Silver said.