Kemmerer: Golden Petition Drive a Farce

In an email blast, Democrat James Kemmerer, challenging incumbent State Senator Marty Golden in the 22nd District, called Golden's taxpayer-funded mailer last week asking for signatures on a petition to lower the $15 Brooklyn-side Verrazano Bridge toll -- the country's highest -- a cynical election year gesture.

Golden doesn't need signatures on a petition to make the case in Albany that the Verrazano tolls are too high for Brooklyn drivers, said Kemmerer. A member of the Senate Majority for more than a decade, Golden sits on the MTA Capital Review Board. As part of the Senate leadership, Golden could obviously have done something about the Verrazano tolls himself, Kemmerer said.

But Golden, he said, has a habit of saying one thing in Brooklyn and doing another in Albany.

Passing around a petition, at taxpayer expense, calling for lower tolls on the Verrazano may look good to Golden's constituents, but petitions don't substitute for action in Albany, said Kemmerer.  That action isn't forthcoming, he said, because Golden's grip on his Republican Party leadership position depends upon his willingness to favor Upstate and Long Island interests above those of his own district.

James Kemmerer's website.

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