Monday, October 13, 2008

Common Cause Statement Regarding Self-Interest and Mayor Bloomberg's Term Limit Proposal

10/13/2008 -- There is talk today that Mayor Michael Bloomberg offered political cover and the possibility of long-term job security to Council Speaker Christine Quinn in return for her support of his proposal to allow himself a position on the 2009 ballot.

It is well documented that Speaker Quinn has joined Mayor Bloomberg in reversing her past position on term limit modification.

It is said that the Mayor promised the Speaker a position on his side of City Hall were she to lose her Council seat or her Speaker's gavel. Though the purported arrangement was mentioned in the City's gossip pages, the Mayor's recent policy proposals and decisions for commission appointments leave it nearly impossible to ascertain where the Mayor's closed-door conversations may lead nowadays.

We are saddened to see this degree of naked ambition seeming to play out so brazenly among the City's elected leaders. Decisions on appointments and City policy should be made on the basis of what is best for the public interest, not based on self-interest.

We would hope that our elected officials would be able to rise above self-interest and weigh public policy on the only acceptable basis - what is best for the people. We are disappointed to see that it appears that the proposal to extend term limits only for those currently in office is having exactly the opposite effect. Horse-trading and arm-twisting are a necessary part of politics and policy, undoubtedly, but self-serving policies must never be.

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