Republicans in the State Senate are firing back after being criticized this week over what some say is a broken campaign promise. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos was a popular target this week, branded a deceiver by editorial writers, and singled out by former mayor Ed Koch for reneging on his promise to reform the stateís once-a-decade redistricting process.
"Iím very disappointed that heís withdrawn his commitment. Most people donít do that in politics," Koch told reporters Tuesday.
Last July, Skelos signed a pledge to support an independent, non-partisan redistricting commission. A bill submitted by Governor Andrew Cuomo would create just that, but Skelos now wonít support it.
He said this week he is still reviewing constitutional concerns with the bill.
At issue: Cuomo would appoint some members of a nominations committee that would select a pool of candidates for the commission. Constitutional law expert and former Cuomo advisor Jerry Goldfeder says he doesnít see a problem since the legislature still has final say over whatever plan the commission comes up with.
"The governorís involvement in the initial phases of this process doesnít infringe upon the ultimate legislative authority. Thatís what's called for in the constitution, and that continues to exist," Goldfeder said.
Skelos also says Cuomoís bill favors Democrats by a six-to-two margin.