Editorial: A fireable offense

This is not an endorsement of Roy McDonald.

We start off this way because some of what’s going to follow could be read as a defense of the state senator. But we don’t do endorsements. This is less about the senator from Saratoga and more about the utter absurdity of the political system.

For the past week, announcements have been gushing forth from Republican committees in Saratoga County dropping any support for Sen. Roy McDonald, who’s up for reelection this year. In most instances, his deciding “yes” vote on the issue of gay marriage is cited, or at least strongly hinted at.

What these political committees end up choosing is, frankly, very much their own business. If party leaders feel McDonald’s departure from the party stance on gay marriage is grounds to drum him out of office, then it’s their right to throw their support elsewhere.

But what is simultaneously fascinating and vexing is that the line in the sand has finally been exposed. In New York, where holding state office is nearly as good as a guaranteed lifetime job, this is what gets a major party to swing the ax?

No one was snubbed in the wake of the Senate’s 2009 leadership debacle that shut down state government and literally made New York the laughingstock of the entire country. Even after jeopardizing the very institution of the Senate, both parties backed the same horses and very little changed.

And nobody has had to pack up and go home when the budget teeters on the brink of disaster year after year. Or when property taxes spiral ever upward and threaten constituents’ abilities to raise their families. Or when a nexus of mandates, fees and taxes choke business and industry to the point we have to pay companies billions to come here, while strangling our schools.

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