Simotas may put her words together into odd combinations and then stumble over them, but she's very good at one particular tactic, what I call "killing with concern." It goes like this:
- Acknowledge the problem and sympathize with the people experiencing it.
- Raise concerns about the proposed solution. Go into as much detail as you can.
- DO NOT propose any remedy to the concerns you raised in Step 2.
- If anyone tries to address the concerns you raised or proposes an alternate solution, return to Step 1.
You will notice that Simotas does this with the MTA and the taxis: yes, of course her constituents need good transit, but the MTA is so wasteful and unfair! Her constituents need good taxi service, but the current law was passed in an unconventional way, and may be unconstitutional!
This is, of course, standard practice for the Assembly, and she probably learned it directly from Gianaris and from her other mentors, City Council member Peter Vallone and his father, former City Council Speaker Peter Vallone. Read and listen to statements made by various Assembly members about transit and you'll hear it over and over: they'd love to do something about transit, but they've got this concern...
In this interview, it is easy to tell the difference between an issue that Simotas actually cares about (pork and redistricting) and one that she doesn't. If she cares about the issue she addresses all the possible objections and has a solution ready. If she doesn't care, well, gee, she'd love to help, but she's got these concerns...
I'd like to finish by pointing out that this bullshit artist was not actually elected in any meaningful sense of the word. She was chosen as the party favorite after heavy lobbying by Gianaris and the Vallones. Her primary challengers, the disappointing Jeremiah Frei-Pearson and some guy named John Ciafone, quit the race when it became clear that Simotas had overwhelming political and financial backing. The Republicans and the Greens couldn't find anyone to run against her in the general election. Voters have never had the opportunity to choose her over anyone else.