Paterson’s Communications Director Quits

Another one bites the dust. The unraveling of Governor David Paterson’s administration continued today as Peter E. Kauffmann, his communications director, resigned this afternoon.

From the Daily News:

“As a former officer in the United States Navy, integrity and commitment to public service are values I take seriously,” Kauffmann said in a statement.

“Unfortunately, as recent developments have come to light, I cannot in good conscience continue in my current position.”

Kauffmann was involved in a recent investigation by New York’s Commission of Public Integrity into whether Paterson violated ethics laws by accepting tickets to the opening game of the World Series last year. His testimony before the panel showed significant discrepancies with Paterson’s. The commission report also suggests that Paterson may have lied to Kauffmann about the baseball tickets.

The language and spirit of today’s statement stands in sharp contrast to one he released on Feb. 19, when he was still trying to protect Paterson:

After weeks of expectations, and a circus-like atmosphere fed by the worst of Planet Albany, the New York Times article finally published today offers no explosive revelations about Governor Paterson. … It should not be news to anyone who has followed Governor Paterson’s fight to reform Albany and bring fiscal discipline to State government that the special interests and chattering classes are opposed to his efforts. These attacks will not stop Governor Paterson from standing up to the special interests and fighting for the people of New York.

Paterson is also weathering a separate scandal stemming from a slew of New York Times reports intimating that Paterson had state workers try to hush up a woman who was trying to press an assault case against his aide, David Johnson.