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Republicans call public financing commission is unconstitutional

Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb and Senate Minority Leader John Flanagan each have appointees on the commission that could determine the future of how campaigns are paid for with public dollars and the practice of allowing candidates to run on multiple ballot lines.

But on Thursday, the commission appointees for the Republicans argued the commission is unconstitutional and can’t alter fusion voting, a provision that is key for the future of the Conservative and Working Families parties.

“Today, I join my Republican colleagues to support the legal efforts of the State Conservative Party and Working Families Party to put a merciful end to the unconstitutional charade being carried out by Democrats,” Kolb said in a statement.

He said the panel has “absolutely no accountability” to New Yorkers.

Flanagan in a separate statement agreed.

“Democrats controlling this state violated the very responsibilities given to them by the people by putting their duties in the hands of nine unelected, and therefore unaccountable, Public Campaign Finance and Elections commissioners,” he said. “This unconstitutional abdication of authority must be struck down by the Court.”

The commission was devised earlier this year to hash out the specifics of a system of publicly financed campaigns in an arrangement that was strikingly similar to a commission devised to approve pay raises for state lawmakers and statewide elected officials.

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