Friday, December 29, 2006

Spitzer: No state worker holiday for Ford funeral

Newsday AP Story

A real tough spot for Spitzer to be in......on his first day in matter what decision he would have made........there would have been some criticism......andy

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ Unlike when President Reagan's state funeral was held in 2004, there will be no day off for New York's state government workers on Tuesday as the nation honors the late President Ford. Instead, Democrat Gov.-elect Eliot Spitzer said Ford will be honored with a statewide moment of silence at 10 a.m. Tuesday during the state funeral in Washington. Spitzer said Friday the state will continue to fly its flags at half-staff, a gesture ordered by outgoing Gov. George Pataki. The question of whether to give state workers the day off came at a difficult time for Spitzer, whose inauguration ceremony is being held on New Year's Day. He has pledged to run an activist government and his campaign slogan was: "On Day One, everything changes." Pataki, who did not seek re-election this year and is eyeing a run for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination, gave state workers the day off for Reagan's state funeral in June 2004. Pataki and his wife attended the funeral. "The nation is mourning the passing of President Gerald Ford, who served his country with honor and distinction. A great American, our 38th president was the embodiment of the national values we hold dear _ responsibility, love of family and service to one's country. Our deepest thoughts and prayers are with Mrs. Ford and the entire Ford family," said Spitzer in a statement announcing his decision. "State offices will remain open on Tuesday and the passing of President Ford will be commemorated with a statewide moment of silence at 10 a.m.," the statement added. Since the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, state offices in New York have been closed five times to mark the death of former presidents or other government officials: _Nov. 25, 1963. President Kennedy. _June 7, 1968. New York Sen. Robert F. Kennedy. _March 31, 1969. President Dwight D. Eisenhower. _Dec. 28, 1972. President Harry S. Truman. _Jan. 26, 1973. President Lyndon B. Johnson.

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