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Constituents entitled to a special election

I read with dismay the recent article in The News concerning the possibility of special elections being called to replace the 11 state legislators who are no longer seated. At least two have been convicted of crimes, and mine resigned in disgrace over allegations of sexual harassment. The governor has the sole power to call special elections for these vacancies. He stated, “It’s a balance of the cost and the hardship of the election versus the community’s right to representation,” and no plans were made to call special elections. I very rarely agree with anything this governor says, but this time he’s correct – and the fact that 1,786,880 of us must suffer through this legislative session without representation is disgusting. For once, he finally has his facts correct, but his conclusion is terrible. The Revolutionary War was fought over this issue. Barring armed revolt, he must be held accountable for this in November.

Senate GOP leader Dean Skelos observed that we don’t need the special elections, since they would occur while budget deliberations are going on and “The main thing is, we don’t want to have anything that would disrupt the legislative session.” Hello! That’s exactly what we want. We need to derail this government’s overtaxing of our citizens, and we are being denied representation that might help accomplish that.

Finally, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver feels there is no need for special elections because “Once the budget is enacted, there isn’t a whole lot that will be considered between the budget and the end of the year.” If this is the case, why do we have a six-month session? What are we paying for from April through June? Why don’t we stop the session on April 1, send them home and save half their annual salaries?

Chuck Godfrey

Cheektowaga