Governor Andrew Cuomo’s ditched a controversial gun law put in place by ex-Governor George Pataki — and, as you probably expected, Fred Dicker, the New York Post’s state capital bureau chief/captain of the Cuomo rah-rah squad, got the “exclusive” on the story.
Dicker, as you also might imagine, is lovin’ his BFF’s decision to scrap the law.
Pataki’s law, CoBis (Combined Ballistics Identification System), was put in place in 2000 when the former governor had delusions ambitions that he would someday be president. The law from the Republican governor was an effort to win over the hearts of Democrats before a possible presidential run.
CoBis has been described as a “DNA database for handguns.” It required
gun manufacturers to file spent cartridge
shells from new semi-automatic handguns with the State Police.
Authorities would then keep a record of the spent cartridges so they
could be compared to any found at crime scenes.
From Dicker’s Cuomo campaign ad…er, column:
Many Democrats praised the program, and even then-First Lady Hillary
Rodham Clinton, running for the US Senate in New York, praised Pataki
for showing “real leadership in proposing a state-based ballistics
program . . . something that needs to be done on a national level.”
Trouble is, the Pataki program NEVER worked. Despite the hundreds of
thousands of spent shells submitted, not one criminal was ever captured
using the extensive and costly-to-maintain database, state officials
“We are ending a program that doesn’t solve crimes or make our streets safe,” said Cuomo spokesman Josh Vlasto.
“That’s what we said would happen from the start,” crowed Tom King,
president of the New York Rifle and Pistol Association and a National
Rifle Association board member. “I think Andrew Cuomo is a very
intelligent guy who didn’t want to waste money, and this wasn’t
As we noted, Dicker got the “exclusive” on the story —
and we’d venture to guess that’s not because he spent a week analyzing
Cuomo’s budget with a fine-toothed comb, but rather that Cuomo’s media
flack wanted this story out there, they didn’t want the Democratic governor coming across as soft on gun control, and figured they could count on Dicker
to write a glowing review.
The title of Dicker’s column is “Cuomo Whacks Pataki Gun Law.” Perhaps a more appropriate headline would be “Andrew Cuomo, he’s our man, if he can’t do it…oh, who am I kidding — he’s Andrew Cuomo, of course he can do it.”