OPINION: Skelos’ Conviction Must Be Followed by Major Reforms in Albany

Skelos’ Conviction Must Be Followed by Major Reforms in Albany

Today former New York state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos was found guilty on charges of public corruption, less than two weeks after his longtime colleague, former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, was also convicted.

The convictions of Dean Skelos and Sheldon Silver are victories for the millions of New Yorkers struggling to have their voices heard in an Albany where big money — and the corruption that comes with it — too often trump the interests of average citizens. But the conviction of two individuals isn’t a permanent solution to Albany’s systemic rot. Real reforms — including a voluntary public financing system to enhance ordinary citizens’ voices, the closing of campaign finance loopholes, and the lowering of contribution limits — must be enacted to ensure we don’t simply see a new Skelos and a new Silver take their place.

Lawrence Norden is the deputy director of the Brennan Center’s democracy program.

Print Friendly
Share this Article: