State Senate candidate C. Scott Vanderhoef's campaign sent out a smear mailer to Orange and Rockland County voters this week that wrongly links his opponent, David Carlucci to shady outgoing Senator Pedro Espada. The Vanderhoef mailer makes the erroneous implication that Carlucci is being funded by the forces behind Espada.
But nothing can be further from the truth and Vanderhoef should be retract his obvious and outlandish lies. If Vanderhoef's campaign did any real research in regards to Carlucci, they'll find that the Clarkstown Town Clerk has been a vocal antagonist of Pedro Espada, has protested in front of Espada's Mamaroneck home and has requested that Espada be expunged from the Democratic Party, saying:
There is no room for unethical behavior on the part of our elected officials from any political party, and I will do everything I can to return the trust of the people to it's governmental institutions.- Advertisement -
What makes the Vanderhoef campaign's ham-handed lie even more damnable is that Vanderhoef is much more tightly bound to the dysfunctional and corrupt Senators that brought Espada to power in the infamous 2009 coup. State Senate Republican leader Dean Skelos, a huge Vanderhoef ally and financial backer, was the person responsible for the backroom machinations that eclipsed with Espada's nefarious rise to power.
Republican billionaire Tom Golisano, upset with the new Democratic majority in the State Senate, held a series of private meetings with Senators Skelos, Republicans Tom Libous and George D. Maziarz, Espada, and since-ousted Senator Hiram Monserrate. The conspirators even met at Espada's house in Albany, where Monseratte and Espada agreed to caucus with the Republicans, which would flip control of the Senate back from Democratic to Republican.
Only Skelos and Espada could smile.
Skelos promised to restore the $2 million of member items--or pork--to Espada that the Democrats in the State Senate refused him; money that Espada wanted to funnel into his non-profit Soundview Health Center and for his cronies. It was later found that Espada was using Soundview as his personal ATM, which provided for a $9 million severance package, financing his vacations, and even $20,000 in sushi. Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, filed suit against Espada, accusing him of looting the organization's charitable assets. So, it was Skelos and the Republicans that were fueling Espada's crime wave, while the Democrats tried to deny Espada funds, prosecuted him, and tried remove him from the party.
Also, among Albany insiders and media, it is widely speculated that Skelos agreed to pay for Monseratte's legal fees in his domestic violence case in return for his allegiance. However, Monserrate blinked and returned to the Democrats for reasons that are not clear. This left a 31-31 deadlock and with Skelos help, Espada hijacked the Senate and even became Acting Lieutenant Governor in the process. Eventually, Democrats held their collective noses and reluctantly allowed Espada to return to the fold, but only after he was promised the role of Majority Leader. In the end, it was Skelos that handed Espada a vise-grip on State politics.
And now we have Scott Vanderhoef claiming he'll go to Albany as a reformer. But this too is a canard. Vanderhoef is Skelos's boy and we can only assume that Skelos will remain a huge player in the corruption that addles our State. If Vanderhoef is elected, don't count on him standing up to Skelos or the leadership of his own party, he will never vote for the needed reform to get our government working again, he will just become another cog keeping our state from ever achieving legislative reform and financial recovery. Scott Vanderhoef will not stop Dean Skelos from giving away millions of our tax dollars to miscreants and their cronies and he will look the other way as the Republican leader again hatches another fiendish back-room power play.
This article is republished as SD-38: Scott Vanderhoef's ties to Albany corruption on the Albany Project.