In Defense of Spitzer

Here’s the first push-back I've seen on the storyline that Eliot Spitzer’s allies are abandoning him: a statement from Stuart Applebaum, the president of the RWDSU union (who, coincidentally, played a key role in Andrew Cuomo’s campaign and was a member of Cuomo's transition team).

"We are proud to have supported him and will continue to whole-heartedly support him in his efforts to turn this state around from the malaise of the Pataki years and improve the lives of New York's working people,” Applebaum said in a public statement.

 

Here's the full statement:

 

The members of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU) have confidence in Governor Spitzer and his administration. We have seen first hand the difference he can make in the lives of working people.

He touched the lives of our members and other working people throughout his years as attorney general. He gave voice to their concerns and fought for their rights to fair pay and back pay. He did this in Bushwick and elsewhere in New York City for workers at Footco, a chain of shoe stores. He achieved back pay settlements of over 7 million dollars for supermarket delivery people in Manhattan.

We are proud to have supported him and will continue to whole-heartedly support him in his efforts to turn this state around from the malaise of the Pataki years and improve the lives of New York's working people.

The focus of the last few days distracts from the important work that needs to be done on improving the state's economy, expanding access to health care and increasing access to child care. If Republicans in Albany use these events as an excuse not to address these important needs, that would be a tragedy for all New Yorkers.