Paterson Threatens Senators With Summer Detention

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Photo: Everett Bogue; Photos: Getty Images, iStockphoto

Though today is officially the last day of the State Senate's session, there are 40 time-sensitive bills, like a city sales-tax hike and mayoral control, that need to be voted on, and damn it, Governor Paterson is going to make sure that happens. Well, sort of. Yesterday an ornery Paterson announced that he would force senators back into the chamber in a special session tomorrow, as is his constitutional right. But there's nothing he can do to make them actually vote once they're inside, besides threatening their summer vacation plans. "If the senators do not cooperate with this order I will convene a special session every day until they do," Paterson said, possibly while repeatedly smacking a ruler into his palm. "That means Saturdays, Sundays. That includes July 4. There will be no excuses, and there will be no tolerance to noncompliance with this order." Hopefully, where a sense of shame or responsibility has failed to convince senators to compromise, the possibility of a miserable Independence Day — spent indoors, without hot dogs, among people they despise — will succeed. Meanwhile, it's unclear where a vote on gay marriage stands in all of this. Paterson had originally not included the bill in a list of legislative items to be taken up in the special session, but after an outcry from gay-rights advocates, he told the Times last night that "he would make sure that the State Senate votes on same sex-marriage legislation before it breaks for the summer." Make that if it breaks for the summer.

Paterson Vows Vote on Gay Marriage Before Break [NYT]