Squadron Resigning From New York Senate

In an opinion column in today’s Daily News State Senator Daniel Squadron, whose district includes Brooklyn Heights along with Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens (where he resides with his wife and children) and much of lower Manhattan, announced his resignation from the New York Senate, where he has served since 2009. His resignation is effective this Friday, August 11. His replacement will be elected this November; meanwhile, he said, the balance between his party, the Democrats, and the GOP in the Senate will not be affected.

His decision came because of his frustration with “structural barriers, including ‘three men in a room’ decisionmaking, loophole-riddled campaign finance rules and a governor-controlled budget process.” While he called New York “a particularly seedy example” of government overwhelmed by moneyed interests and a culture of corruption, he noted that other states have similar problems. Following his resignation, he plans to join with entrepreneur Adam Pritzker and Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University to “launch a national effort focused on addressing this crisis — joining others already doing important work toward 2018 and beyond.”

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  • Quinn Raymond

    Best wishes to Daniel on his new project. Thank you for representing us all these years.

  • Slyone

    He will be missed. He’s been a strong, thoughtful advocate for public schools, including PS/MS8.

  • Andrew Porter

    So we are without representation of our interests and needs for the next three months. Not a good situation for his constituents.

  • Quinn Raymond

    The legislature is not going to be in session during this time, and based on my personal experiences Assemblymember Simon and Councilmember Levin are very responsive on constituent needs.

    The more troubling question is what will the specific process be for selecting a qualified replacement on the Democratic ticket, and will our community have any input on this?

  • Diesel

    Sounds like a noble cause, I hope he succeeds.

  • Robbie Young

    Hi Andrew,

    If you have a constituent need, you can and should continue to contact the district office number at 212-298-5565.

    All the best,

  • ColumbiaHeightster

    Can personally vouch for Levin’s responsiveness.

  • JL Lewis

    The central reality which at least someone here should using to view any representative is, have things gotten better or worse during his reign…well, let’s see; the streets are worse, the library is down we now have a huge toxic presence under our promenade and we are flooded with darlings from east new York and Sen S rolled over on it all..yes he did….

  • B.

    In regard to the Cadman Plaza Library, Squadron voted the way all our other “leaders” voted: to allow the developer to proceed with demolishing a library he hadn’t yet paid for, in preparation for erecting a high rise whose financing remains dubious.

    Probably Squadron knew the replacement library would be a pale shade of the former library. Well, he enabled the destruction. Too bad for him. The next time de Blasio tries to skirt laws, he won’t be so lucky, and Squadron won’t have to worry that he’ll get sucked into the next ethics maelstrom.

  • Susan O’Doherty

    “Flooded with darlings from East New York”? You mean, kids from less advantaged neighborhoods are coming to enjoy a public park?

  • meschwar

    I’m mad that he hasn’t done anything to rid the neighborhood of racists.

  • Carlo Trigiani

    I’m certain Squadron is a decent guy but the fact is he’s a product of the very system he professes to detest. Fieldston School, Yale, worked for Weiner, Chuck Schumer, trust fund invested with Madoff – elected to the senate at the age of 28. He’s a product of the system that continues to fail us all.
    Now he’s leaving to raise money to fight the Koch brothers.
    It’s simple – put hard term limits on elected office (city state and federal) and get money out of the process (call it campaign finance elimination).
    And you wonder why we elect Trump.

  • Slyone

    This is an interesting conversation, and prob not one best for a public blog. But here goes . . . I liked term limits in theory, but having lived through the switch to them in the FL legislature long ago, I’m now ambivalent. People — if they’re not independently wealthy — almost have to be angling for (or at least thinking about) post-office employment after their terms end pretty early in the process. It also empowers staffers, which can be good or bad. What exactly do you mean by “campaign finance elimination”? Can wealthy people use their own money to self-finance? How would a relatively unknown person compete against a celebrity?

  • Reggie

    The streets are the city’s responsibility, not the state’s; the library isn’t in Squadron’s district; I try to stay on topic of civic affairs but have no idea what the “huge toxic presence” is and I am with meschwar on the last point. I think Daniel Squadron was a far better senator than JL Lewis deserved.

  • R.O.Shipman

    I don’t like term limits. After a number of years all they end up leading to is an inexperienced legislature that don’t understand the problems and can’t get things done. Worse, many of the newbies rising to state seats where there are term limits are at the far ends of the political spectrum, given the natural low-turnout of low-level primary elections.

    Our system of entrenched politicians, paid interests, etc. isn’t necessarily better, but term limits are not the panacea. We need to end three men in a room, enforce contribution limits, etc.

  • Reggie

    I read Squadron’s op-ed in the Daily News and he does not express distaste for people who have had privileged upbringings. He is critical instead of “heavily invested special interests,” “structural barriers, including ‘three men in a room’ decisionmaking, loophole-riddled campaign finance rules and a governor-controlled budget process.” Did you even read his statement?

  • Werner Cohn

    Are there any hidden reasons for this abrupt departure ?

  • Brixtony

    100% false. This is Jeff?

  • Solovely

    Joining Jeffrey Sachs at Earth Institute at Columbia (Sachs is the author, “The End of Poverty,” and many other important contributions) could be a highly effective next role.

    Some of my absolute favorite people from different disciplines are creatively joining forces, a reason for happiness and optimism


  • Carlo Trigiani

    I read the statement. Read his bio – understand who you’re supporting. He’s privileged. Who works for five years after college and is suddenly qualified to be a New York State Senator? Chuck Schumer handed the 28-year old a seat. Squadron was put in a room. Maybe not the room he wanted to be put in. He’s pissed he’s not in the room. Maybe Levin will take the seat. Another inexperienced twenty something anointed by the late great Democratic leader Vito Lopez. Rest assured his Senator uncle from Michigan helped. What qualified him – he had a cat. The system is a joke. So Squadron is going to go raise money to fight the Kochs? Here’s an idea for you – find someone who will “serve”, has actually worked, paid a mortgage. Fix the problems the liberals and conservatives have created.

  • JL Lewis

    Yes, of course besides the overall reality of the decline in the conditions in the Heights which certainly was on his and other key figures’ direct watch, there is why this departure at this abrupt moment? A looming scandals? Perhaps so, but it would be productive to look at possible undisclosed events in the financial and NGO circles in which he moved long before his being a public figure.

  • JLLewis

    Funny, at one of his “town meetings” he went into one of his anti gun rants. I simply asked him what he thought of doctors shoveling out SSRI’s? he would not speak to the issue. After the meeting he made a few remarks to me, so I simply said that no one who looks, and acts, like an escapee from Ocean Parkway and Ave D is going to decide how I protect my family.

  • JL Lewis

    Meanwhile, he skillfully departs at a time that no true outside party can effectively run. thus ONLY party insiders and bosses will returning the “choice” the public has in its “representation” for the next few years. How typically arrogant and dismissive; which was always just below the surface his entire reign.

  • Carlo Trigiani

    Term limits – why not limit house of representatives to 10 years max, five terms, senate to 12 years, two terms max. These guys spend all their time fundraising, disparaging the other side to gain control and power, instead of actually solving problems. Healthcare is solvable but will not improve as long as elected officials are beholden to special interests. When’s the last time you heard tort reform mentioned? Of course not – the legislators are all lawyers financially supported by guess who – lawyers. Who else writes checks – doctors, insurance companies, hospital corporations, drug companies. End result – minimal change with special interests continuing to profit handsomely from the system. Joe Manchin’s daughter made $18 million last year selling Epi-pens. They want to “serve” but they are only serving themselves.
    Campaign Finance Elimination – show me a candidate who doesn’t want my money and I’ll listen. If that candidate wants to fix problems – I’ll consider her. Tell me what you believe and how you’d fix it – you’d then have my attention. It starts with taking money (special interests) out of the system.

  • Reggie

    Have you tried any SSRIs? I don’t know if they help with non sequiturs or pogonophobia but medication probably couldn’t hurt.

  • Reggie

    Okay, so you read it, but you apparently had already formed your opinion and it seems based on class issues for you. I don’t care if Squadron had a privileged background; he was good at his job, better than most.

  • Still Here

    Agree – Perhaps we all need to support the proposal for a NYC constitutional convention on the ballot this year and change the system. See https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/05/nyregion/constitutional-convention-voting-new-york.html?_r=0

  • http://selfabsorbedboomer.blogspot.com/ Claude Scales

    Almost certainly. Jeff’s one redeeming virtue that I know of is that he has good taste in old rock ‘n’ roll. “JLLewis” is an abbreviated version of “Jerry Lee Lewis.”

  • KXrVrii1

    Part of the reason may be that he is cashing out. Adam Pritzker is part of one of the wealthiest familes in the country, “His father is John Pritzker, an American billionaire and investor in hotels. His relatives include 11 billionaires.” I’d bet Squadron’s new salary is richer than that of a state senator, and provides future opportunities to hang out with the ultra 1%.


  • Carlo Trigiani

    What has good has he done? “Better than most.” Really? Better than Silver and Skelos I guess. Pretty low bar, wouldn’t you agree? Albany’s a swamp too. So is city hall. We can do better.