Barron Calls for Quinn to Step Down

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Charles Barron is going to call for Christine Quinn to step down as speaker of the City Council, because of her connection to the recently discovered slush fund her aides used to fund budget requests.

Speaking outside of City Hall just now with Liz and me, Barron said, "She should step down from the speaker’s position until this investigation is complete," referring to Bill Thompson’s audit and the other inquiries currently under way of the Council.

"She put the comptroller on the line. She put the mayor on the line. I know both of them are angry with her," he said. "Christine has not been honest and forthcoming," he said, not buying her explanation that some members of her staff disobeyed her direct orders to stop "parking" money in fictitious organizations in the budget.

Barron declined to say who should replace her in the meantime, and said he didn’t know enough about another member currently under investigation, Kendall Stewart, to say whether he should step down as well. Stewart has admitted to being subpoenaed by federal investigators who are reportedly looking at a pay-to-play scandal involving campaign contributions to city lawmakers.

UPDATE: I also asked Barron about the fact that his district received the second most amount of money from the secret fund which would undermine the notion that the money only went to her political allies. “That doesn’t matter,” Barron said. “She did that on her own, for whatever reason [she] did it. I had nothing to do with that.”

Barron Calls for Quinn to Step Down