"Throw The Bums Out!": Koch on Albany Legislators - NBC New York

"Throw The Bums Out!": Koch on Albany Legislators

Koch talks life, bad politics

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    Although a recent quadruple bypass has physically slowed ornery former Mayor Ed Koch, he says his mind is still sharp.

    "I walk a little slower, but my mind functions." 

    And in an interview on "Give and Take with Julie Menin," on NYNonStop, he came out swinging against national, city, and state
    politicians, showing just how sharp it is.

    "Throw the bums out," he said, referring to the "dysfunctional" elected officials in Albany.

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    "The good aren't good enough, and the bad are evil," he added.  "The good may be good, but they haven't been willing to stand up .
    They show no spine."

    Koch is now working with good government groups and the Citizens Union to spearhead a coalition to purge Albany of said bums.
    Together the group plans to interview incumbents and pick out people who have the worst records, and he's determined to do sweeping reform in both parties.

    And the first pol he thinks should go?  Governor David Paterson.

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    "I believe he should [resign], and I'm one of the few who has said so," said Koch.  "At this point, he's non-functional."

    Although Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has yet to announce his candidacy for Governor, Koch has endorsed him.  This, though,
    doesn't mean he isn't aware of the threat to Cuomo by Republicans Rick Lazio and Steve Levy. 

    "This is a year where nothing can be taken for granted," he said, referring to Cuomo's large lead in the polls.  "No incumbent is
    safe."

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    The former Mayor was also outspoken on President Obama's recent involvement with Israel, denouncing his treatment of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and their development plans in Jerusalem. 

    "I blame President Obama for where we are today, which is in a terrible situation," he said.  "He humiliated Israel, a close
    ally, and  it's prime minister."

    "I hold President Obama responsible for the low relationships the two countries have," he added, saying that Jews feel
    betrayed by Obama's actions. 

    "Like Humpty Dumpty, the relationship will never be put together as it once was."

    But despite his criticism of Obama's foreign policy, on a national level, he said he supported the recent health care bill--
    even though he says "it's a bad bill."

    "It allows the concept of health care to become the official policy of the United States," he said.

    Locally, Koch thinks Mayor Bloomberg is doing an "absolutely terrific" job, adding, "We're lucky to have him.  He knows finance, he knows commerce, and he's going to lead us through a very difficult period."

    On former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, Koch came out a little softer than he has in the past -- considering that  he published a book titled, "Giuliani: Nasty Man," during Rudy's campaign for Senate. 

    "Rudy was a good mayor, and a terrible person", said Koch.  "And when I say terrible person I mean personality.  He's very
    engaging on a one-to-one basis, and I personally like him."

    For the 2013 election, Koch supports a familiar -- but unlikely -- candidate.

    "I support Ray Kelly," he said. "He says he wont [run], but I believe he will!"

    The 85-year old Koch also reflected on his life spent in public service, saying he had absolutely no regrets as he grew older, and that he's not afraid of death.

    In fact, he already picked out his final resting spot -- a plot at Trinity Cemetery in Upper Manhattan.  He chose it for it's location in Manhattan as well as it's proximity to a subway station.

    "So it's easier to visit me," he said.