Horner on Paterson’s Yankee Tickets: How Could Anyone Do Something So Dumb?

ALBANY—David Paterson’s reported solicitation of World Series tickets from the New York Yankees–first reported this morning by Fred Dicker–was “dumb,” according to a long-time ethics watchdog.

“If he really asks for the tickets, it’s a clear violation of the ethics law. It’s mind-bogglingly inexplicable. Why would the governor do that? It makes no sense,” Blair Horner, legislative director for NYPIRG, just told me by phone. “We’re looking at it now, but the Commission on Public Integrity doesn’t need a complaint. Again, I think it’s a pretty clear case. There may be some aspect about it that we don’t know, but the Commission on Public Integrity should investigate whether the governor was involved in the solicitation of an illegal gift from a lobbyist.”

“If he did what’s been reported, it was a dumb idea,” Horner added.

Horner and others filed a request with the Commission to investigate smearing leaks made by the Paterson administration against Caroline Kennedy, which the commission has just said it would not pursue with a notice of reasonable cause that legal violations have occurred.