State Passes Budget Extender; Bronx's Diaz Sr. Only Dem to Vote Against It

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Bronx State Senator Ruben Diaz, Sr. was the only Democrat to vote against a budget extender resolution that would allow the government to continue paying employees for at least another week while lawmakers work to pass a budget that is now two and a half months overdue.

Still, the resolution passed because three Republicans voted for it. Diaz's fellow amigo in the Senate (and oddly, former bitter enemy), Pedro Espada, Jr., voted for the measure despite earlier threatening to vote against any further budget extenders.

Diaz and Espada have both said the extenders include cuts that they don't agree with.

Diaz said he understands that his fellow Democrats are angry, but he also says he has a solution to plugging the budget gap with two bills he has introduced that would seek Canadian prescription drug purchases and stricter assessments of credit card taxes.(Not sure exactly how those would make up the difference, but obviously, his colleagues aren't jumping all over them.)

Still, Diaz is sticking to his guns. “The black Puerto Rican with the funny accent and the kinky hair is showing you how simple it is,” Diaz told the Albany Times-Union.