Dean Skelos, former New York State Senate Temporary President and Republican Majority Leader, was sentenced today in federal court on corruption charges. Skelos received a five year prison sentence, while his son Adam received a six and a half year sentence.
Father and son arrived separately but departed together, navigating a media crush each time.
After both Skeloses had made it into a waiting car a family member had a brief altercation with a reporter. Grabbing a reporter’s wrist, A nephew of Dean Skelos, Basil (Billy) Skelos, grabbed a reporter’s wrist and flung her phone across the street. After being surrounded by press as he walked away Basil Skelos was stopped by the NYPD and charged with misdemeanor assault.
Today Joe Lhota campaigned at a subway stop on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. At 77th Street & Lexington Avenue, the stop has a heavy flow of voters who, if Lhota is to prevail, Lhota must connect with.
Update – Lhota Press Conference:
Here is Joe Lhota’s full media availability, at the conclusion of his campaign stop.
Among the topics he addressed:
Dean Skelos, and Lhota’s view of Skelos’s policies vis-a-vis New York City
His relationship w/ Dan Isaacs, Manhattan Republican Chair, who campaigned with Lhota today
Public poll results showing him far behind Bill de Blasio
The effect of the hard-fought primary, and whether his primary rivals will support/endorse him
The MTA and it’s ongoing work, and how that affects Lhota’s campaign
During a press availability following his campaigning, I asked Lhota about State Senate Temporary President/Republican Conference Leader Dean Skelos. In a statement on Tuesday, Lhota announced that Skelos and former governor George Pataki, both of whom supported John Catsimatidis in the primary, have endorsed Lhota. In his statement, Lhota described them as “true examples of sensible and responsible governing” and “great New York leaders”. As Temporary President/Republican Conference Leader in the Senate (not “Majority Leader” as referenced in Lhota’s statement) Skelos has often acted in ways that most New York City residents would consider against their interests, including elimination of the commuter tax, blocking a vote on a fracking ban and pushing school aid formulas to benefit suburban districts over the City. His kind words toward Skelos illustrate a major challenge for Lhota. Dramatically behind in public polls, Lhota needs to tend to Republican Party faithful while trying to find an opening with City voters whose views differ markedly from the suburban/rural dominated state Republican Party.
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