Monday, June 15, 2009

NYS State Senate Remains In Chaos; Monserrate Flips Again

Hiram Monserrate has gone back to the Democrats, and the chaotic situation on the Third Floor remains just that - chaotic.
"I'm coming home," the Queens Democrat told the Daily News in an exclusive interview on Sunday.

Monserrate stunned the state's political establishment and paralyzed the Legislature a week ago when he rebelled against his own party and voted with fellow Democrat Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. of the Bronx to hand control of the Senate to the Republican minority.

The mercurial Monserrate is set to announce at a morning press conference on Monday that he is returning to the Democratic caucus - without Espada.

His decision creates an astonishing 31-31 deadlock in the Senate and further muddles the question of which party controls that body.

"I said I wouldn't return to the caucus without a leadership change among the Democrats, and that has happened," Monserrate told The News.
Monserrate met with Al Sharpton and New York Daily News Report Juan Gonzales at the Georgia Peach Diner on Queens Boulevard to break the news. The diner has great food, and I've eaten there on occasion, so we know that they ate well.

Monserrate is a piece of work, whose assault of his girlfriend remains in the news as details of her injuries notes that the wounds went all the way to the bone. She needed more than 20 stitches to close the wounds.

It also comes as little surprise that current Democrat leader Malcolm Smith is out, and John Sampson is in as conference leader. Smith has been disastrous as leader, and the situation has meant that the strongest politician in Albany right now is Democrat Sheldon Silver, who is the Assembly Speaker. He's the only one of the troika (Senate Majority Leader, Governor David Paterson, and Speaker) who seems to know what he's doing, even though Silver's out to enlarge his power at the expense of the rest of the state.

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