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Privilege, Perjury, And The World Series

Monday, Dec. 20, 2010


Accepting tickets to sporting events seems to be the “Achilles’ heel” of many elected officials. The excitement of hosting the Super Bowl, Olympic games, or NHL playoffs can prove to be very tempting – especially if everybody does it.
So it is no surprise to learn that New York Governor David Patterson was caught soliciting and accepting 5 tickets to the 2009 World Series, compliments of the New York Yankees. The state Commission on Public Integrity levied a $62,125 fine.
 Patterson, who says he always “intended to pay for them,” was also charged with lying to the commission when neither his staff nor the Yankees would back up that story.
Because the baseball team has numerous issues before the state government the conflict of interest is obvious. The more damaging part of this story is Patterson’s deliberate attempt to cover up, including post-dating a check.
While some have criticized the amount of the fine, the commission said ethics rules must be applied “exactingly at the top.”
“The moral and ethical tone of any organization is set at the top,” according to the commission report. “Unfortunately, the governor set a totally inappropriate tone by his dishonest and unethical conduct. Such conduct cannot be tolerated by any New York State employee, particularly our governor.”


Tags: New York Governor David Patterson, New York State Commission on Public Integrity, perjury, Super Bowl tickets, World Series tickets

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