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How the Senate Republican Majority Leader debate affects education

Regardless of your political persuasion, the current situation regarding the Senate Republican Majority Leader in Albany matters if you are concerned about education in New York State.

Senator Skelos, who has been the Senate Republican Majority Leader, was arrested on federal corruption charges last week Monday May 4, 2015.  He indicated right after his arrest that he would not step down as Majority Leader despite the charges.  Since then as some Senate Republicans including Senator Amedore have called for him to step down, Skelos has gone so far as to threaten that he would resign his Senate seat as well if he is forced to step down.  This would put the Senate Republican majority in danger which of course the Republicans want to avoid.  Read here and here.

Senator Skelos is innocent until proven guilt and will have his day in court, however I do not believe that he can adequately serve any longer as the Senate Majority Leader.  He will be distracted by defending himself and so will everyone around him.  Proper attention will not be placed on the work that the New York State Senate should be accomplishing if he remains as Senate Majority Leader.

The next question is who should become the new Senate Majority Leader and the story just keeps getting crazier!  Both Senator Skelos (who has been charged with a crime) and Governor Cuomo believe that they should have a say in the selection of the next leader – read here.  Their pick is Senator Flanagan who has consistently stood in support of the current education reforms/Common Core in New York State.  I am sure you can see why I am opposed to Senator Flanagan becoming the next Senate Majority Leader.  As Senate education committee chair, he has been stifling any bills that would bring relief from Common Core and if he becomes the Senate Majority Leader, he will just have more power!

A number of the Republican Senators are leaning toward selection of Senator DeFrancisco as the Senate Majority Leader over Senator Flanagan.  Read about Senator DeFrancisco here and here.  I do not know where Senator DeFrancisco stands specifically regarding Common Core but my hope is that he will at least be open to listening to the concerns of parents and teachers, concerns which Senator Flanagan has essentially ignored.

Please contact Senator Amedore and let him know that you want to see a new Senate Majority Leader and that you support the selection of Senator DeFrancisco over Senator Flanagan as the next Senate Majority Leader.

Senator George Amedore  518-455-2350

UPDATE May 11, 2015 11:30pm  I am disappointed to report that Senator Flanagan has been selected as the new Senate Republican Majority Leader – report here and here.

It appears the vote was unanimous based on this letter from Senator LaValle so that means Senator Amedore voted for Senator Flanagan?

LaValle unanimous for Flanagan