Yet another twist to the Albany coup story, Joe Bruno (R-Saratoga, retired), the former New York Senate majority leader (who stepped down amidst scandal last year and did not seek reelection), has come out in favor of marriage equality. Aside from the pigs flying while hell freezes over aspect of this–which is considerable–the move is remarkable for its implications with respect to the disputed leadership of the NY State Senate.

Right now, you have a situation where both Dem. Malcolm Smith and Rep. Dean Skelos are claiming to be Majority Leader of the Senate. Former Leader Joe Bruno is only 10 months into a 2 year lobbying ban.

Bruno just issued a public statement saying that he favored the marriage equality legislation pending in the Senate and that, although he will not be able to work the phones or solicit votes in favor of this legislation directly, he hopes his public position on this may sway enough votes from his former colleagues to pass the bill.

Think about that for a moment, it’s staggering. It would set Bruno up as a de facto majority leader in exile. Able to pass legislation and to circumvent the lobbying ban. That would be an astounding display of power and would, yet again, shift the governing paradigm in Albany.

Cynthia Kouril

Cynthia Kouril

Cynthia Kouril is a former Special Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York under several different U.S. Attorneys, former counsel to the Inspector General for the N.Y.C. Department of Environmental Protection where she investigated threats to the New York City water supply and other environmental crimes, as well as public corruption and fraud against the government, former Examining Attorney at the N.Y.C. Department of Investigation and former Capital Construction Counsel at New York City Parks and Recreation.
She is now in private practice with a colleague whom she met while at the USA Attorney's Office. Ms. Kouril is a member of the Steering Committee, National Committeewoman and Regional Coordinator for the New York Democratic Lawyers Council, a member of the Program Committee of the Federal Bar Council and a member of the Election Law Committee at the Association of the Bar of the City of New York. She is active in several other Bar Associations.
Most important of all, she is a soccer mom.