While the country was fixated on New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer's (D) dramatic fall from grace, his successor, Lt. Gov. David Paterson (D), was supposed to be in Washington, D.C., at a National Lieutenant Governors Association (NLGA) meeting and preparing for its annual gathering in Buffalo, N.Y., this summer. Naturally, Paterson did not attend, and now it's uncertain whether New York will host the July shindig. The state will not have a lieutenant governor once Paterson steps in for Spitzer on March 17. Although New York Senate President Pro Tem Joseph L. Bruno (R) will fulfill the duties of the post, he doesn't get the title. NLGA will talk with Paterson and Bruno to see whether New York still wants to host the event. "We're confident something can be worked out," NLGA Executive Director Julia Hurst told Stateline.org at the conference.
Speaking of Spitzer, voters across the country have seen enough dirty laundry this week to last them a while, but some New England residents are balking at viewing even recently washed clothes. Homeowners associations in Connecticut and Vermont are fighting bills to allow residents to use clotheslines, according to a story in The Boston Globe. A similar bill in New Hampshire died in committee, the paper reports. Supporters of the bills say they are protecting their "right to dry" and promoting an environmentally friendly option to the dryer.
University of Missouri football fans were ecstatic when their Tigers beat the Kansas University Jayhawks 36-28 in a nationally televised game in November. But "Mizzou" fans howled when the Jayhawks were chosen to play in the Orange Bowl in January - one of college football's premier bowl games. So, Missouri 's federal lawmakers protested when U.S. Rep. Nancy Boyda (D-Kan.) sponsored a resolution commending Kansas on its season, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch . The Show-Me-State's entire delegation voted "present."
Illinois lawmakers sent a message to the state's children about consuming popular new alcoholic "energy" drinks: Do as I say, not as I do. State Sen. Ricky Hendon (D) was one of the legislators that cracked open - and sampled - a bottle of the spiked Sparks drink before voting to require labeling on the beverages to clearly mark them as alcoholic, reports the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights. The Senate committee voted 8-2 to approve the labeling requirements, meant to ward youngsters away.
Perhaps only in New Jersey can you file a lawsuit for a bribe gone awry, according to The Star-Ledger of Newark . Albert Esoldi, of Lodi , N.J. , paid $31,000 to have a former mobster grease the skids with a state lawmaker and get his son a job at the Garden State 's biggest power company. But the lawmaker says he never got the cash, and the son didn't get the gig. Esoldi not only sued, but got most of his 31 G's back, the paper reports.