State Senator Malcolm Smith eyed running for mayor, but decided against it. Amid news of his arrests, some Democratic candidates who are in the race are saying the scandal shows more than Smith is at fault. NY1's Josh Robin filed the following report.
Others may be indicted, but to hear some of her Democratic rivals tell it, Christine Quinn's own scheme is behind it.
"I'm saying that the people in charge of the City Council should have done something different, and it clearly falls on them," said mayoral candidate William Thompson.
The comment came in the wake of charges that Queens councilman Dan Halloran promised to filter council funds for use in a congressional bid.
He's just the latest council member to gotten into trouble through the city budget system.
It's always expected it would become an issue in the mayor's race, but now, the timeline has been sped up.
Quinn defended herself Tuesday.
"I think the statements that have been made by Public Advocate de Blasio and Bill Thompson are just examples of the worst kind of mud-slinging," Quinn said.
As for Smith, he has long ties to a number of elected officials, especially to former Governor Eliot Spitzer, who helped put him atop the state Senate in 2008.
Smith deals less with the current governor, Andrew Cuomo.
"I hope that he fully cooperates with the investigation, and I hope that the investigation is thorough and speedy and gets to the facts," Cuomo said. "But it is very, very troubling."
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has worked with Smith, and got his cross-party endorsement in 2005.
He said that the arrest points to the need for non-partisan primaries. Smith allegedly got into hot water by trying to run for mayor on the Republican line, even though he wasn't registered as one.
When Bloomberg ran for mayor last time, in 2009, he ran on the Republican line, but he wasn't technically a registered Republican. He instead had to get approval from at least three of the city's five Republican county chairs.
It's an obscure process known as a Wilson Pakula.
Bloomberg said he remembers little.
"I was an independent, so maybe I had to have a Wilson Pakula," Bloomberg said. "I just don't remember."
Before he got the Republican lines, Bloomberg opened his wallet to those same county Republicans whose support he needed. Records show he gave them hundreds of thousands of dollars in the months before that election day.