Dozens of women’s rights and progressive advocates were arrested outside of the offices of Independent Democratic Conference leader Jeff Klein’s Albany office today. They allegedly blocked the door to the legislator’s office and were removed by State troopers and charged with disorderly conduct.
Many of the protesters were demonstrating against the IDC’s stripping of abortion provisions from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Agenda. Other protesters were angered over the IDC’s ham-handed handling of other measures, such as campaign finance reform, transgender rights, farm worker wages, women’s rights, and hydraulic fracturing. The protesters are upset that Klein, who serves as the co-leader of the Senate as part of a power-sharing agreement with the Senate Republicans, has failed to use his office to properly advance bills on these issues to a floor vote.
Late Monday night, Klein and the rest of the four-member gutted Cuomo’s entire abortion plank to the ire of activists. Klein, along with State Senators Diane Savino, David Carlucci, and David Valesky chose to appease the obstructionist Republican leadership and not put the full 10-point agenda to a vote.