Ripples from the latest New York Times story on Governor Paterson are starting to rock the Albany boat. Allies have begun to ask him to drop his campaign, foes are calling for full-on resignation and now a cabinet member is stepping down.
The official in question, Deputy Secretary for Public Safety Denise O’Donnell, oversees the state police and cites the potential scandal in her decision to resign:
Superintendent Corbitt told me the staff member had an argument with his girlfriend, that a domestic incident report had been filed, but that there was no arrest and that the matter was being handled as a local police matter by the New York Police Department.
My immediate concern was what role the State Police would take in the investigation and I was assured by Superintendent Corbitt that the State Police were not involved.
It was only last night when I learned from press reports the contrary details, including the involvement of the State Police.
For these reasons, I am resigning my position as commissioner of the Division of Criminal Justice Services and Deputy Secretary of Public Safety effective today.
The Times has lots more, but the gist of it is this: Everybody who is talking thinks Paterson’s political goose is pretty much cooked.
UPDATE: Democratic Rep. Nita Lowey says if “serious allegations” are true, “the governor should no longer be in office.”
UPDATE 2: Paterson talked to reporters briefly Thursday night. Sounding weary and decidedly less defiant than in recent appearances, the governor said he was not suspending his campaign, but talking to party officials to “hear their opinions.”