Zeldin, a Republican, Opposes Furloughs

This isn’t what I expected: A Republican is defending union members.

Republican state Senate candidate, Lee Zeldin of Suffolk, is out with a statement opposing a furlough of state workers. The statement from Zeldin doesn’t lay out alternatives to the furlough–which Governor David Paterson has proposed in order to help close the state’s budget gap.

But this should help him appeal to unions for support in his campaign against Democratic incumbent Brian Foley.

From Zeldin:

I strongly oppose furloughs of state employees which are being imposed due to the incompetence of our state government and their failure to have passed a budget by now.

My opponent, Brian Foley, and his “leaders”, have once again let down hard working blue collar middle income Long Islanders.

This new furlough literally takes food off the table of Long Islanders already struggling with our outrageously high property taxes and overall cost of living.

I was born into a union family and appreciate the dedicated effort of those state workers who don’t easily make ends meet and aren’t overpaid as some may mistakenly think.

Had the State Budget been passed on April 1st, 40 days ago, state employees would not be suffering from these furloughs.  Quite frankly, if Albany didn’t increase spending by 13 billion dollars last year, we would have had a budget surplus this year instead of a deficit.

Instead, the Senate should stop defending their own unearned furloughs with their disgraceful 2 day work weeks (afternoon Monday to afternoon Wednesday).  Legislators should stay in Albany and do the job we hired them to do, no matter how long it takes, even if it means working around the clock!