Dem Money Man on Spitzer “Misstep,” Institutional Independence

It's not too soon to start wondering how the very public failure of Eliot Spitzer's aides to undermine Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno will affect Democratic efforts to retake the majority in the next legislative elections.

Bill Samuels, the finance chairman for the Democrats in the state Senate, told me that the key will mostly be to put the focus on other things. “We say to the voters, here are positive reasons–here are the type of things why we’ll be different. It won’t just be a changing of the guard. And you have to do that around specific legislation, openness, fair redistricting, a whole host of issues. So, that hasn’t changed.”

But: “Yes, Spitzer’s misstep is not a positive. We’re huge supporters of Eliot’s, but you wouldn’t have won on that anyway. You have to win the state Senate because it’s an independent body. It’s got a role to play. It’s never going to be a rubber stamp of any governor whether it be Republican or Democratic.”