Annals of ill-advised rhetoric

State Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin -- who represents most of Rensselaer County -- at a press conference today for a group of Republican legislators -- including Jim Tedisco -- pushing to make it harder to use "messages of necessity" to quickly pass bills (like with the recent gun control bill): "We're told, basically, to shut up and vote ... If that's not dictatorial, I don't know what is. Hitler would be proud. Mussolini would be proud of what we did here. Moscow would be proud. That's not democracy." McLaughlin ended up posting an apology to Andrew Cuomo on YouTube. "Sometimes in the heat of the moment you say things that you regret, and that's what happened today..." Related: Steve McLaughlin speaking against the SAFE Act in the Assembly chamber. [TU CapCon] [Jim Tedisco] [Steve McLaughlin YouTube] [Steve McLaughlin YouTube]

Comments

Gov. Cuomo also used a message of necessity to pass the new "Tier VI" pension plan last year, significantly reducing the pensions of new local and sate employees and increasing employee pension contributions. Funny, but I don't remember Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin objecting to Cuomo's use of the message of necessity then.

I guess McLaughlin accepts the use of 'dictator-like' tactics when he supports a bill, but objects to it when he doesn't support the bill.

Assemblyman McLaughlin: Can you say 'hypocrite'?

I'm not suggesting these analogies weren't over the top, but if one wanted to suggest that a current political leader was acting in a dictatorial fashion, which lesser dictators would be politically correct enough to invoke?

Also -- Bob is right on the money in his observation!

@chrisck: "which lesser dictators would be politically correct enough to invoke?". None. Zilch. Zippo. Nada. Which should be big enough a clue for these people to get a grip and realize they are, indeed, *not* living in a dictatorship.

@-S -- Your point is well taken. However, the use of analogy, simile, and metaphor is generally colorful and not infrequently exaggerated to make a point. It's used in language all the time. Even the adjective "dictatorial" would be off limits unless it met your strict, historical definition of a dictatorship.

Without commenting on the specifics of any bill passed using this method:

I don't know how "dictatorial" it is to ask the popularly elected legislature to vote on an issue. That actually sounds more democratic than the nonsense of bills getting lost in committee and subjected to lobbyist review before going to another committee which decides if,how and when the bill will be discussed and introduced.

In short "Legislators vote!" is hardly a dictatorial move.

Ramming something through in the middle of the night (Tier 6) doesn't seem all that democratic to me. But that vote was part of bigger undemocratic horse trading. "Give me Tier 6 and I won't hammer you on redistricting so your seats will stay safe for your perpetual reelection."

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

Recently on All Over Albany

Today's moment of summer

Reach! The sun is up there...... (more)

Cameras and unintended consequences

One of the threads in the recent national conversation about interactions between police and communities has been a push for the adoption of body cameras... (more)

The Capital Region's theater district

In the late 1920s there were 19 theaters in just the city of Schenectady. "Companies like General Electric and ALCO were booming back then," says... (more)

GE Realty Plot tour 2015

The GE Realty Plot Home & Garden Tour returns this year on Jun 6 and 7. Tickets are $25 and available at a handful of... (more)

George Pataki is running for President

As mentioned everywhere, George Pataki is running for president. His announcement video is embedded above. In the video you'll no doubt immediately recognize the... (more)

Recent Comments

... I think for me and many in the community, there is a desire to go back to this point in time, were neighborhoods were rounder, more complete and effervescent, and not so square that they can't take any unique pegs coming its way. There is a lot of energy in this neighborhood, and potential, not unlike other industrial zones in other cities, that have scene remarkable change towards diverse economies. Some do it well, others not so much, so I think it will be important to take those lessons learned from our peers to make sure it is done right. ...

The Capital Region's theater district

...has 2 comments, most recently from Sally

Frozen yogurt at Ayelada

...has 3 comments, most recently from chrisck

GE Realty Plot tour 2015

...has 1 comment, most recently from Buffy

George Pataki is running for President

...has 1 comment, most recently from George

A few facts, controversies, and quirks from the Northway's history

...has 3 comments, most recently from 70s kid