Dem Spokesman on Espada and Monserrate: ‘A Thief and a Thug’

ALBANY—Austin Shafran, spokesman for State Senator Malcolm Smith, just told me that this coup (which he called "illegal") in the

ALBANY—Austin Shafran, spokesman for State Senator Malcolm Smith, just told me that this coup (which he called "illegal") in the chamber was orchestrated by "a thief and a thug."

He was referring to State Senator Pedro Esapda Jr., who has run afoul of the state board of elections and is under investigation by the Bronx County district attorney and Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's office, as well as State Senator Hiram Monserrate, who has been indicted for assaulting his girlfriend.

"It's extortion," Shafran, visibly angry, said.

Yesterday, of course, both senators were happy members of the Democratic conference. Dem Spokesman on Espada and Monserrate: ‘A Thief and a Thug’