WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW
By Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz
32nd Senatorial District, Bronx County, New York
Why Not a Senate Conservative Conference?
As you know, I have been as unusually, uncharacteristically, uncustomary, and uncommonly quiet as possible during the latest Albany brouhaha about the future of the New York State Senate.
News articles and blogs appear daily about the back and forth bickering and dickering among New York’s State Senators about who will control the Senate and what impact the Senate Independent Democratic Conference will have on the Senate.
Like I said, I’ve remained very quiet as my Senate colleagues step in front of cameras and microphones to posture themselves to promote any number of social issues that can or will be on the Senate floor when Session resumes.
You should all know that I have made it crystal clear that I am a Democrat, that I have always been a Democrat, and that I have no intention of being anything other than a Democrat.
You should also know that people have been whispering in my ear saying that since the breakaway Independent Democratic Conference is thriving, there are some Senators who may be interested in forming another Senate Conference.
To this notion, I think to myself: Why not? Why not a Senate Conservative Conference? If there are people who are entitled to form a different Senate Conference, why can’t there be a bipartisan Senate Conservative Conference to enhance true coalition government?
According to my count, aside from the already two Conservative Democrats in the State Senate, there must be at least ten Conservative Republicans.
And as far as I know, several hot-button social issues will come before the Senate for a vote in 2013 that will be opposed by both Democrat and Republican Conservatives. These issues include the Woman's Reproductive Health Act, which will most certainly push New York’s already staggering abortion rate even higher, and a controversial bill to legalize the medical marijuana in New York.
With all this in mind, if – and I say “IF” new Senate Conferences are allowed to form, and believe me I’m not saying, “Let’s do it,” but IF this is allowed, then why not form a Senate Conference to fight for traditional values. Keep in mind that family values proved to be one of the major issues that caused some Senators to lose their Senate seats in this past election. There’s no denying that several elections in New York State were determined because the incumbent opposed conservative values and because some incumbents were in fact opposed by the Conservative Party.
And so my advice to my Senate colleagues is to think very carefully about approving any Senate Conference outside of the Democrat Conference and the Republican Conference because you just may be opening Pandora’s Box. Once that Box is opened, what would stop Conservative Members of the State Senate from forming a Conference of their own?
This is State Senate Reverend Rubén Díaz and this is what you should know.