Shame of the Senate

You would have hoped that Albany’s lawmakers would have learned something from the debacle of a few weeks ago, when business in the State Capitol came to a halt while state senators acted like schoolchildren in a food fight. It’s clear, however, that this crowd seems incapable of understanding its own hubris.

The son of Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada Jr. recently beat a hasty retreat from a $120,000-a-year job as the Senate’s deputy director of intergovernmental relations, a post that did not exist until young Pedro G. Espada came along. Senator Espada said he had nothing to do with his son’s hiring—the move was approved by Brooklyn Senator John Sampson, the Senate’s Democratic conference chairman. Regardless of who was behind this appalling act of nepotism, the larger message is what matters: Albany’s leaders still don’t get it.

The younger Espada resigned when word came down that Attorney General Andrew Cuomo was opening an inquiry into the hiring. If there was nothing untoward about the process, why quit? The resignation confirmed taxpayers’ worst suspicions.

Mr. Cuomo continues to emerge as Albany’s most effective hall monitor. His transformation from an old Albany hand to the avenging angel of outraged taxpayers is both timely and necessary. Mr. Cuomo’s prospective gubernatorial bid next year will be helped, not hindered, by the likes of Senators Espada and Sampson.

Shame of the Senate