Corrupt politicians or targeted leaders? Queens Chronicle

The recent spate of arrests and criminal investigations involving public officials has ensnared a high percentage of minorities in the state Legislature, leading some in the community to ask if black and Hispanic lawmakers are being targeted.

State Sen. James SandersState Sen. James Sanders (D-Jamaica) decided last week that the question of conspiracy or corruption was far better-suited for an open, frank and free-wheeling debate before nearly 200 people at the Black Spectrum Theatre in Roy Wilkins Park in Jamaica.

A panel consisting of former Assemblyman Michael Benjamin (D-Bronx), student Betty Mahmud of the New York City Urban Debate League and Terryl Demendonca of the Misunderstood Youth Center argued that corrupt politicians come and are prosecuted in all colors and ethnicities.

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Fmr  Bronx Assemblyman Michael Benjamin

Attorney Richard Washington, student Tyler Anderson of the Debate League and Paul Nichols argued that the numbers and percentages of investigations run suspiciously and disproportionately high among minority legislators. Nichols, a member of Sanders’ staff, said he was speaking for himself and not the senator.

The moderator was Prof. Leonard Baynes of the St. John’s University School of Law.

A show of hands in the remaining crowd at the end of the evening wpid-larger.jpegcame down 27 to 24 in favor of the corruption argument.


About SquarePegDem

A former state legislator turned NY Post editorial board member, thought-leader, public affairs consultant and commentator, columnist and blogger. Michael has appeared on Al Jazeera America Tonight, NY1/Inside City Hall, LIVE, YNN/Capital Tonight, The Brian Lehrer Show, The Fred Dicker Show, The Capitol Press Room, and The Daily Show. His op-eds have appeared in the NY Post, City and State, The Legislative Gazette, Bronx Times, The Troy Record, Buffalo News, and the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. To schedule speaking engagements, email FOMB08@GMAIL.COM.
This entry was posted in African Americans, Elections, Government, Media, Political corruption, Politics, Public Corruption, RAce Relations, Racial Justice and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Corrupt politicians or targeted leaders? Queens Chronicle

  1. says:


    Sent from my iPad


  2. Dale Benjamin Drakeford says:

    I want corruption rooted out and prosecuted even when it comes in pink. Those of color breaking laws should be made to turn red and put in jail. Stop the pussy footing around and lock them up. Period.


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