Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz on the Dissenters

Ruben Diaz

August 03, 2011

August 3, 2011

For Immediate Release

Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz (D-NY) has released the following statement in response to the Debt Ceiling vote:

"After voting ‘no’ on the Debt Ceiling vote, United States Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has publicly criticized this legislation as an "unbalanced approach” that “did not include new taxes on the wealthiest Americans and the elimination of loopholes benefiting corporations”.

But I never heard her nor any Democrat from New York City (except for Senator Tom Duane and me) criticize Governor Andrew Cuomo for not including a Millionaires Tax in the Governor Cuomo’s Budget that was clearly balanced on the backs of the poor and needy.

To the contrary, Democrats praised Governor Cuomo for passing his Budget. Even Tea Party activists applauded him!

Senator Tom Duane and I were the ONLY symbolic Democrat dissenters on this issue. Except for the two of us, the entire NYC delegation of Senators praised the Democratic Governor for his Budget while Senator Duane and I were seen as pariahs.

The Albany Budget and the Washington debt ceiling deal are not exactly equivalent, but there are parallels to be made. Both resulted in deep spending cuts, and just as it happened New York, there were no tax increases in Washington to raise the debt ceiling.

Now it is the same people who are criticizing Washington for doing the very same thing that Governor Cuomo did to New York. This is the Janus-faced nature of some of my colleagues in government trying to have it both ways.

Let’s remember that Governor Andrew Cuomo started the whole thing. He has set the trend.

Ladies and gentlemen, you cannot have your cake and eat it too."