GOV BLASTS 'NASTY' MIKE
SHOCKING BROADSIDES BY MILD-MANNERED DAVE
June 16, 2008 -- Mayor Bloomberg is a nasty, untrustworthy, tan trum-prone liar who "has little use" for average New Yorkers - like the 1,500 workers who would have lost their jobs had OTB closed, a furious Gov. Paterson has said privately.
"He appears to be self-destructing," the governor said.
According to a source with firsthand knowledge of Paterson's comments, the governor said that during talks last week on OTB's future, Bloomberg threw the same kind of bizarre tantrums that disgraced former Gov. Eliot Spitzer had been known for.
"He has the same kind of anger that reminds you of Spitzer," Paterson said. "I think he's starting to be concerned that he can't get anything done."
The governor charged that Bloomberg has repeatedly misrepresented the facts to the point that "you can't trust him."
The normally even-tempered Paterson leveled the explosive charges in private conversations this weekend after a bitter confrontation with the mayor on the pending state takeover of the New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., the source said.
The state agreed to take over the Big Apple's 60 OTB parlors, but the mayor then raised the stakes, insisting the city should continue to receive $18 million in surcharges on bets.
A last-minute compromise was reached yesterday.
The source quoted Paterson as saying of Bloomberg, "There's some kind of destabilization over there."
"His presidential thing didn't work out, term limits is looming to force him out, he's waiting and waiting to be asked to be vice president, congestion pricing didn't happen, he lost teacher tenure, the Jets stadium, and OTB isn't going the way he wants it."
Paterson compared Bloomberg to Spitzer, whose rages during private conversations became notorious before he resigned in March.
"Eliot Spitzer's tantrums were bizarre because you never knew when they were coming or why, whether it was contrived or whether he was a psycho," the governor said.
"With Bloomberg, you know why he's upset, but he has the same kind of anger that reminds you of Spitzer."
Paterson concluded Bloomberg's behavior will prove ruinous if - despite repeated claims that he's not interested - he runs for governor in 2010.
"It's obvious that Bloomberg has little use for the kind of people who come from Queens and Staten Island, so how is he going to approach the people of Oswego and Lewis counties and Buffalo?" he asked.
"The people of New York City may be OK with the mayor taking off and flying to his private home in Bermuda every weekend, but if he did that at the state level, I think the people would send him a different message."
Paterson's tirade against the mayor also extended to his staff and the City Council.
He told friends he believes Bloomberg, a billionaire, isn't getting honest advice from his staff "because they're all afraid of him and his wealth."
And he said council members have repeatedly refused to stand up to the mayor because "he's bought most of them off."
About the talks on OTB, Paterson said, "The public generally hasn't seen the nastiness and the outbursts that were seen during the past week."
"We have a very good example of a person who had no defects with the public, and, all of a sudden, he's self-destructing."
The governor charged that Bloomberg cruelly tried to use the city's 1,500 OTB workers to "extort" more and more money from the state during weeks of secret negotiations - and then lied to the public about the agreements that were reached.
Paterson claimed Bloomberg falsely insisted Friday that he didn't know the governor would hold a press conference to announce a state takeover of OTB - even though the mayor had been repeatedly told of the event.
"Mayor, do I have to list for you of all the people you told that you knew I was having that press conference?" Paterson said.
And the governor claimed it wasn't the first time Bloomberg had misrepresented the facts.
"There have been four or five incidents starting back in April, when the pope visited New York, where he's just said things that aren't true. It's very strange. You can't trust him," he said.
Paterson also told friends he was surprised at Bloomberg's seeming lack of political sense in the OTB battle.
"The mayor totally misplayed this," he said.