Paterson: Media Painted Us As ‘Cartoon Characters’


david-patersonEnding weeks of rumors and speculation, Gov. David Paterson announced Friday he will not run for a full term, as reported here on  Watching Paterson bow out of an election he clearly could not have won came with a sense of déjà vu. The scene was so similar to when his predecessor, Eliot Spitzer, resigned.

It was the same room, with the same podium, the same flags, and even the stalwart wife standing by his side.

Michelle Page Paterson looked trained and angry standing beside her husband, a man who told CBS 2 HD only last week he would never drop out of the governor’s race because only by running could he vindicate himself.

But drop out he did.

“Today I am announcing that I am ending my campaign for governor in the state of New York. It has become increasingly clear to me in the last few days that I cannot run for office and try to manage the state’s business at the same time, and right now New York state needs a leader who can devote full time to this service,” he said.

“I am being realistic about politics. It hasn’t been the latest distraction it’s been an accumulation of obstacles that have obfuscated me from bringing my message to the public,” he said. “Therefore, there are times in politics when you have to know not to strive for service, but to step back. And that moment has come for me.”

It was clearly not what Paterson wanted to do, but he received intense pressure from black leaders, led by the Rev. Al Sharpton. They minced no words, sources told CBS 2 HD. They told him his candidacy had “become untenable” because of the various scandals swirling around him.

Paterson apparently said he “needed to sleep on it until noon” Friday, but ultimately decided he will end his run.

Numerous lawmakers had called for Paterson’s resignation including Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Rep. Steve Israel, and sources even said that Democratic Sen. Kirstin Gillibrand had contemplated putting out a statement saying the same thing.

Paterson’s campaign became difficult for lawmakers and state leaders to support because of the recent rash of stories regarding him and his relationship with a senior aide. Additionally, with Paterson promising to have a very bruising primary, many Democrats thought that the state Democratic party would be better served being united and not having a bruising primary.

Though he is being investigated by State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, Paterson said he’s innocent.

“I give you this personal oath: I have never abused my office, not ever,” Paterson said.

Paterson insisted that he will be cleared but he charged that stories by the New York Times and other news outlets had turned him and his family into “cartoon characters.”

“I will admit I was very disturbed,” Paterson said.

He was disturbed that for three weeks the unsubstantiated rumors were in headlines on the front pages of a lot of newspapers.

“It was painful both Michelle and I,” Paterson said. “I think that they were trying to do right by the public and when you become sort of celebrity cartoon characters to be made fun of we forget that these are real people who are trying to do a good job.”

Cuomo issued a statement saying he was sure “this is a difficult choice and a sad day for the governor and his family.”

Sources said the AG’s probe is focused on New York State Police actions.

There’s no word yet on whether Paterson will serve out his entire term, but it sounds like he will and try to get a budget agreement amid the huge budget gaps plaguing the state.

Prior to all of the current scandals reported about Paterson, Cuomo was said to be holding his water waiting to see what would happen as there have been rampant rumors he would make his own bid for the governor’s office. Cuomo doesn’t really have to announce candidacy until sometime after the state party meets in May, when it selects candidates. Source said Democrats were telling Paterson that he would have difficulties having the state Democratic party supporting him even to be on the ballot.

Calls for Paterson to abandon his election bid mounted Thursday as the state attorney general announced he would investigate whether the administration or state police committed a crime in talking to a woman who had filed a domestic violence report against a top aide to the governor.

Paterson’s top criminal justice Cabinet member resigned Thursday over the burgeoning scandal, saying conduct by the state police was “distressing” for an administration that has devoted itself to reducing domestic violence.

{WCBS-TV/Noam Newscenter}


  1. When stabbed in the back by his fellow democrats and the liberal media it’s called asking him to “step aside.” If done by republicans it’s called “racism.”

  2. He can’t win but he is a good guy! He’s a victim of the left who are out to get him because he’s more moral and center than they wish. The blacks hate him too because he’s an upstanding guy. Too bad! Now NY will be stuck with another mushchos and lefty!