Thingish Things

New York is No Wisconsin

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Feb• 23•11

New York is no Wisconsin.  Regrettably.

Our problems are just as bad — worse actually — but our solutions are far more limited.

There will be no Albany legislators fleeing to Pennsylvania or Vermont or Canada to stop reforms from being voted on here. They don’t have to.

With Shelly Silver as speaker in the state Assembly, no substantive union reforms can get through in New York anyway.

Silver’s Assembly is owned lock-stock-and-barrel by the public sector unions. Nothing they don’t want — and everything they do want — gets voted on in that house. And no bill can become law without Assembly approval.

The public sector unions in New York have gone one step farther to solidify power than their brethren in other states. They have formed their own political party — the so-called Working Families Party (WFP).

Creating it was a great strategic move. It allowed the unions far greater latitude in influencing legislators. With a WFP ballot line, ground troops, and ready cash (provided by the taxpayers through union dues), the unions can now hand-pick which Democrats they want in office. Cross the unions, and you’re guaranteed a primary opponent with massive electoral resources.

Governor Cuomo has signaled that he’s willing to fight the unions to stabilize state finances, but with Shelly Silver and his minions in firm control of the Assembly, his task is all the more difficult.

New York may have to fall deeper into a hole before were blessed with the sight of Assembly Democrats holed up in a Massachusetts hotel.

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