A column in this week’s Village Voice deconstructs the David Yassky vs John Liu Democratic run-off race for comptroller. In it, Citizens Union honcho Dick Dadey sounds off about Yassky’s flip-flop on term limits:
Village Voice: “He didn’t have any hesitation,” said Dadey. “He indicated to me he would not support overturning the term-limits law without a voter referendum.”
Dadey checked in with Yassky again during a formal visit to City Hall once Bloomberg openly called for the change. “I went up to him and said, ‘David, you’re going to oppose this, right?’ And he said, ‘Of course I am.’ He said it in no uncertain terms. So I marked him down as a ‘Yes’ for our side.”
A few days later, Dadey heard that Yassky was saying something different. “I called him, and he said that he had not yet really made up his mind. I was in disbelief. He said he had not yet come to a final position on the issue and asked that I no longer list him as a ‘Yes,’ but as ‘Undecided.’ I told him, ‘Well, from my point of view, you have changed your mind because you told me on two separate occasions that you were going to oppose this.’ He said, ‘Well, it’s complicated because I am opposed to term limits generally, but I would not like to see this go through.’ ”
The call lasted some 15 fairly heated minutes, says Dadey. “I felt he was backing away from a commitment he had made to me earlier. He was all over the map.”
No matter what your particular stance is on term-limits, Yassky or exactly what “good government” is or should be, isn’t Citizens Union non-partisan?
By its own description, Citizens Union is:
Citizens Union of the City of New York is an independent, non-partisan civic organization dedicated to promoting good government and political reform in the city and state of New York. For more than a century, Citizens Union has served as a watchdog for the public interest and an advocate for the common good. Founded in 1897 to fight the corruption of Tammany Hall, Citizens Union currently works to ensure fair elections, clean campaigns, and open, effective government that is accountable to the citizens of New York. We do so by informing the policy debate and influencing the policy outcomes that affect the lives of all New Yorkers.