Paterson Makes an ‘Instability’ Argument; Judge Stays Restraining Order on Ravitch

ALBANY—David Paterson's lawyers are indeed appealing a decision issued Tuesday night by William LaMarca which enjoined Richard Ravitch from acting as lieutenant governor.

The 10-page memorandum the governor's lawyers filed in support of the appeal is above. This line of logic, which echoes what Paterson told me Sunday, jumped out:

"Moreover, although the stalemate has passed momentarily, the Senate is subject to daily instability. There are currently threatened defections and power-shifts between the parties, which could at any minute result in a shift in the identity of the Temporary President of the Senate. The preliminary injunction issued by the trial court therefore creates uncertainty that "prevent[s] public business from being effectively carried on."

A decision on Paterson's appeal of the temporary injunction is expected Thursday at the earliest, according to a spokesman.

UPDATE: Judge Priscilla Hall in the Appellate Division stayed LaMarca's decision. Paterson's spokesman Peter Kauffmann said the governor is "pleased." A Republican spokesman said the move does nothing for the governor except buy time.

Paterson Makes an ‘Instability’ Argument; Judge Stays Restraining Order on Ravitch