Has Elliot Spitzer Set Up a Pay for Play Reelection Scheme?

Why has New York Governor Elliot Spitzer already set up a fundraising effort for his 2010 reelection effort when he’s still in his first year as governor? The Washington Examiner has a piece today in which Mark Tapscott asks if Governor Spitzer has set up a pay for play scheme in an effort to raise large amounts of money for his reelection:

New York Gov. Elliot Spitzer was elected last year as a reformer and proclaimed soon after winning that he would “unilaterally disarm” from big money contributions, but a look at state board of election data reveals a very different story.

The latest financial disclosure reports by Spitzer 2010, the governor’s re-election campaign, to the New York State Board of Elections reveals that Spitzer has received at least 226 donations of $10,000 or more from a variety of influential New York individuals, law firms, corporate partnerships and political action committees and labor unions.

These donations were made even though Spitzer is still in only the first year of his first term as the Empire State’s chief executive.

Among the high dollar donors are: Donald Trump, Bank of America New York PAC, Building and Construction Trades Council PAC, Cablevision Systems PAC, Edison Properties, LLC, Fulbright & Jaworski, LLP, Health Care Providers PAC, Leo Hindery, Victor Kiam, Law PAC of New York, Medical Liability Mutual Insurance Company PAC, Neighborhood Preservation Political Action Fund, Pomerantz, Haudek, Block, Grossman & Gross LLP, Richard Sarnoff, Sheldon Solow, Bernard Schwartz, Tonio Borgoss & Associates of New Jersey LLP and Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker LLP PAC.

As Mark notes, most high level politicians avoid starting reelection campaigns deliberately to avoid any questions of ethics, but not Spitzer:

But as obvious as it is that Spitzer views his campaign and official operations as two sides of one coin, it is the timing that is most revealing. The smart approach of high-ranking officials like a governor is to put off launching a re-election effort as long as possible to avoid the inevitable ethics scandals that come when there is even a hint that policy and payola go together.

With Spitzer’s approach, though, nobody in New York can have any doubt but that the governor’s number one priority is getting re-elected. The message is clear: You want to do business with state government, you’ve got to pay now to help insure Spitzer gets another term.

Majority of America's High School Seniors Economically Literate
Fed pumps another $38 bil to avert credit crunch