Speaking on New York 1 News just now, Michael Bloomberg political aide, and architect of his non-campaign for president, Kevin Sheekey said, “I don’t see any courage in Albany.”
When asked if the mayor wants Sheldon Silver to remain as Speaker, Sheekey talked around the issue. When challenged that he wasn’t answering the question, Sheekey said, “No I didn’t, did I?” He went on to say, “It’s not a question I’ve asked the mayor so it’s not a question that I’m going to answer tonight.”
When asked if Silver has been an effective leader, Sheekey said, “No, this week, he has not.” Sheekey added that he called a top aide to Silver around 9 a.m. and, as of 7 p.m., had not heard back.
UPDATE: Michael Bloomberg just released a statement along the same lines:
“If that wasn’t shameful enough, it takes a special type of cowardice for elected officials to refuse to stand up and vote their conscience– on an issue that has been debated, and amended significantly to resolve many outstanding issues, for more than a year. Every New Yorker has a right to know if the person they send to Albany was for or against better transit and cleaner air. People know where I stood, and where members of the City Council stood. They deserved at least that from Albany.”
UPDATE II: Silver’s spokesman Dan Weiler didn’t respond directly to Sheekey’s comments, but did tell me just now, “The Assembly had a proposal to bring $5 billion to the table for public transit improvements in the coming five years and it was summarily rejected by Mayor Bloomberg.” Weiller is referring to the funding mechanism inside the millionaire’s tax, which the mayor opposed.