Coppola challenges incumbent to cut ties with 'corrupt party leaders'
Here's a news release from Marc Coppola, state senate candidate for New York’s 61st District.
Senate candidate Marc Coppola is challenging his election opponent "not to associate with corrupt party leaders."
Coppola is calling on incumbent Michael Ranzenhofer, to decline the state’s Independence Party nomination.
“Accepting the support of Independence Party political boss Frank McKay and his upstate colleague, former Democratic Party Chairman Steve Pigeon, sends the wrong message to voters," Coppola said. "Both are under state and federal investigation for alleged money laundering and campaign finance violations.”
Several media outlets around the state have reported that McKay is under investigation by the New York City District Attorney’s office for possible money laundering in connection with NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s re-election campaign. Media outlets have also reported that Pigeon is the focus of multiple investigations by state and federal authorities for similar violations in connection with other campaigns.
Board of Elections records show Senator Ranzenhofer filed an acceptance for the Independence Party nomination on July 12. To get the party’s nod, McKay himself must give the authorization.
Ranzenhofer’s acceptance of the Independence Party line, while knowing that Chairman McKay and Pigeon are both under investigation troubles Coppola.
“I can’t say that I am surprised that Senator Ranzenhofer is willing to work with corrupt party bosses for his own political gain,” Coppola said. “To secure the senate majority, Mr. Ranzenhofer voted to make State Senator Pedro Espada President of the Senate.
"It was a move that put Espada in line to potentially be the next governor. It came even after Espada had been fined by the State Board of Elections for campaign finance violations, and while Espada was under criminal investigation by state and federal authorities.
“It is clear that Senator Ranzenhofer is willing engage with corrupt politicians and party bosses if it benefits him politically. When I started this campaign, I called for an end to cross-endorsements and fusion voting for precisely this reason.
"Confidence in government and its leaders is at an all time low in New York State and the corruption of our political system is a major reason why. I choose to take the high road and not ally myself with party leaders who are under criminal investigation. I challenge my opponent, Mr. Ranzenhofer, to do the same.”
It should also be noted that Senator Ranzenhofer is pursuing the Independence Party line even after he called for Steve Pigeon to be investigated in 2008. It came when Pigeon and Rochester billionaire Tom Gollisano supported Ranzenhofer’s opponent Baby Joe Mesi in the last election.