Updated 02/05/2013 07:15 PM
Lawmakers want more transparency
Reforming "The Message of Necessity" turned what should have been just another day at the Capitol into an emotional burst for one lawmaker. Karen Tararache investigates how clear being transparent really is.
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ALBANY, N.Y.-- "Hitler would be proud, Mussolini would be proud of what we did here, Moscow would be proud but that's not democracy."
The words of Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin spread like wildfire through the Capitol Tuesday.
Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos also added, "That that type of language is inappropriate."
Just hours after making a dictator-like comparison of Governor Cuomo, Assemblymen McLaughlin issued a public apology.
"You know, sometimes in the heat of the moment you say things you regret," it said.
But it’s what's behind the emotional criticism of Cuomo that isn't a new topic for lawmakers.
Assembly Member Jim Tedisco said, "We were a little critical today because of the use and a pattern of using what's called a message of necessity."
The most recent example being the gun control legislation known as the NY SAFE Act. Three weeks ago, the Governor waived a three day aging process allowing Senate to approve the bill just a few minutes before midnight.
Senator Greg Ball felt, "He was focused on making sure that he had that national attention and in the haste of doing so by using the message of necessity we had a bill that was like Swiss cheese, full of holes."
Passing the NYS Transparency Act means "messages of necessity" would no longer keep public and media in the dark, literally. Governor Cuomo feels it would make no difference one way or the other.
"The legislature doesn't have to vote for the bill when the governor issues a message of necessity, they can, so it’s really up to the legislature in the first place. If they don't want to vote on the bill, don't vote."
Senate Democrat Terry Gipson proposed an alternative way to increase transparency, a bill banning the passage of legislation in the middle of the night.
"We should be doing the voting which we've come up here to do. We should be doing it during the daylight."
His "Vampire Voting Act of 2013," if passed, would mean no voting between the hours of 9 p.m. and 9 a.m.
Jim Tedisco added, "In darkness, democracy dies and we'd like to shed more light on the work we do."