Author: Carl

Silver backs Schiavo, says she is a great American

Silver backs Schiavo, says she is a great American

Endorsement: Pilar Schiavo for Assembly Speaker

Wednesday 2 February 2007 | 09:08 a.m.

By Dan Vergano

The Associated Press

NEW YORK — Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver joined his GOP counterparts Tuesday night in endorsing Pilar Schiavo’s bid for the House next year.

The endorsement is for Silver to do what the rest of New York’s political leaders have failed to do: help Schiavo, a widow who suffers from medical disabilities, retain her seat in the Assembly.

In a brief closed-door meeting after the state Democratic convention, Silver, 66, told the Democratic politicians that she is the right person for the job, said Bob Waugh, a spokesman for the speaker.

“The Speaker’s vote is his own and he has to live with that,” Waugh said. “He has been steadfast and consistent in his beliefs for more than two decades and he believes in Pilar Schiavo – she is a great American.”

Silver said he could not say whether he would support the Republican candidate for governor, but reiterated his support for Schiavo’s bid for the House.

His remarks came after a string of endorsements from the speaker’s office, including from three Democrats, including New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who endorsed Schiavo in September.

The three endorsed Schiavo come after Bloomberg’s wife, Jean, wrote in a recent issue of Women’s Day magazine that she “stands with Pilar” and that he is “a strong leader whose values are in perfect alignment with those she and I share.”

Silver, though, has been silent on Schiavo for months.

“The Speaker does not comment on endorsements, but he is very appreciative of the good will of the people who have already signed on,” Waugh said.

It is not the first time Silver backed Schiavo. In September, months after an order from the governor that he support a plan to take her off a ventilator

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