What with terror terrier Faisal Shahzad trying to send some of us to infidel oblivion this past weekend, we temporarily lost sight of our home-hatched wackos in Albany.
On Monday came news that senate president pro tem Malcolm Smith has his own plans on sending people to oblivion, although in his case it’s Republicans. That’s when City Hall‘s Edward-Isaac Dovere (cityhallnews.com) reported on Smith’s rousing speech the night before to a group of upstate rural Democrats. A pumped-up Smith declared that once the senate Democrats get their teeth into the upcoming redistricting process in which voter lines are redrawn for every political district, the GOP will go the way of John Lindsay-style Republicans, i.e. become extinct.
In his own artful words, Smith put it this way: “We are going to draw the lines so that Republicans will be in oblivion in the State of New York for the next 20 years.”
If that wasn’t enough positive publicity, there was the Sunday Daily News report that more than ten years and a lawsuit after Smith ripped off a Queens family for whom he had promised to build a new home, he still owes them $60,000.
The report is by News bloodhounds Barbara Ross, Robert Gearty, and Greg Smith, who have been on Smith’s trail for months and who say that the FBI is now looking at records of that deal and others that Smith worked on when he was a home builder in southeast Queens. Smith has his own guard dog for protection, ace defense lawyer Gerry Shargel, who snapped back that “these investigators are chasing their tails.”
The home probe is the latest entry in an ongoing look by Manhattan federal prosecutors into Smith and several political cronies. Since senate majority leader Pedro Espada is currently the target of his own state/federal probe led by Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, that means two of the three top senate Democrats are now are under criminal investigation.
The Dems are just picking up where their GOP predecessors left off. Sentencing day for the last state senate boss — ex-Republican leader Joe Bruno — is tomorrow in Albany. He is looking at 8 years, if prosecutors have their way.