Michael Bloomberg is continuing to defend his close ally Christine Quinn from the public relations beating she took over the slush fund scandal at the City Council. Speaking at an event hosted by the Conflict of Interest Board this morning, Bloomberg said, according to a transcript forwarded by a reader:
I wanted to say something nice about Christine Quinn- really has, I thought, been unfairly beaten up a little bit in the press. Christine Quinn has tried very hard to open up the processes of how allocations of government funds are made, how contracts are given out. She has added teeth, I think, to the enforcement of lobbying laws and banned all gifts from lobbyists. There are people who think that hasn’t gone far enough, but the this is a democracy and I think Christine Quinn in trying to attack the problem of pay-to-play really has improved the process. We passed a law that makes it harder for those to do business for government to gain undo influence. Some people thought these reforms would never take place. Some people think that we should have included labor unions in those things. Democracy works slowly and it doesn’t work in a revolutionary way. It works in an evolutionary way and I think we should give her the due for taking us in the right direction.
And perhaps down the road we can go even further.
I think she has proven the naysayers wrong that said you can’t do anything about this and the pay-to-play issue.
Bloomberg’s defense of Quinn also has the added benefit of insulating himself from similar criticisms.