Tomorrow we’ll report back on the blind item we gave you earlier today, about a temperamental legislator who drives staffers insane. For now, we’ll tell you that it’s not Senator Ada L. Smith.
Fine, you already knew that; Senator Smith is a mere New York State senator, not a distinguished U.S. Senator. But while we’re on the subject of horrendous legislative bosses with incredibly high staff turnover, we thought we’d mention Smith, who has gone through over 200 staffers during her time as a senator.
The New York Daily News reports:
You think your boss is a nightmare? Try working for state Sen. Ada Smith, aka the Wild Woman of Albany. The Queens legislator has a history of bizarre, allegedly abusive behavior that dates back nearly 20 years…
“I have dealt with difficult people,” said Philip Mahlke, who was Smith’s chief of staff for eight months in 2003. “But never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined what it was like to work for Sen. Smith.”
Mahlke, who is openly gay, said he was fired after complaining about Smith’s abusive, homophobic remarks. “She called me ‘white trash,’ she called me ‘a fag,’” Mahlke recounted last week. “When I called her on it, her response was, ‘I’m a senator, I can do what I want!’”
… Coffee is just one of her favorite projectiles, staffers said. Over the years, Smith has been accused of throwing a trash can, a desk organizer, stacks of paper, a melted ice cream bar — whatever’s handy.
Why can’t we have such colorful characters in the U.S. Congress? Compared to Senator Smith, Cynthia McKinney seems almost sane.
‘Wild Woman’ Tales [NYDN]