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Former AG's campaign fund should go to domestic violence groups, say female state senators

New York State Attorney General's Office

Seven female Republican state senators say some good could come out of the fall of former New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

They say his $8.5 million campaign fund should be turned into a fund to help on women's issues, like the perennial financial problems of women's shelters across New York. Olean State Senator Cathy Young said there is wide support for that.

"Most of the Legislature is shocked and absolutely disgusted by these allegations, so I think that we are in unison about the fact that he had to go, number one, and number two, there should be a prosecution, at least a look at it, and number three, that these funds should go to a good cause."

The AG quit summarily after The New Yorker revealed his alleged behavior in beating women with whom he was involved. Young said there should also be personal punishment.

"Governor Cuomo has named a special prosecutor to look at this. I believe subpoenas have gone out and this issue should be thoroughly examined," Young said. "Someone who is a statewide elected leader needs to lead by example, not abuse women. Especially, it's hypocritical. He's lied over the years and I'm glad he's out of office."

Schneiderman had marketed himself as a strong supporter of women's issues. There is no state agency that can tell the former AG what to do with his campaign treasury.

Young says victims of domestic violence could use that cash.

"It's more prevalent than one may think and we need to have the resources necessary," Young said. "The state invests a lot of money to domestic violence victims and there's always more that can be done - and these victims need help and $8.5 million would go a long way in providing that assistance."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.
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