SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The leader of the Independent Democratic Coalition in the State Senate says the experiment in coalition government in Albany is working.
Senator Jeff Klein, on a stop in Syracuse, says his group of 5 democratic senators, including central New York's Dave Valesky, is proving to be the key in getting things done.
The Independent Democrat Coalition is sharing power in the legislature with the republican party caucus. The group has drawn criticism from the traditional democratic caucus, but Klein says they has shown the IDC plan is working.
Klein said, "The test is showing that we can pass core democratic issues. Like the gun control package that was just passed and signed into law. Like campaign finance reform. Like increasing the minimum wage. These are issues that democrats talked about for a long time, but couldn't get it done with just 32 democrats. So I think, our ability to work together with our republican colleagues on issues that we can agree upon and push forth a democratic agenda is what coalition government is all about."
Klein says he expects the coalition to make major progress in the year ahead on a number of fronts. Among them, a tough look at business regulation in the state and possible reforms.