Happy Hiram Monserrate

Hiram Monserrate represented the iconic borough of Queens. He was expelled in 2010 after his misdemeanor conviction on assault charges, but he avoided prison in the slashing attack on his girlfriend.

His legal troubles weren’t over, however: later in the year, federal prosecutors charged him with two counts of public corruption.

The indictment documents how Monserrate, then a New York City council member, schemed to funnel taxpayer money to the Latino Initiative for Better Resources and Empowerment, Inc., a not-for-profit group he controlled in Queens. Monserrate then stole $300,000 of the discretionary funds, using $109,000 to pay LIBRE workers to help his Senate campaign in 2006. LIBRE hired workers to knock on doors for Monserrate and to collect signatures to put him on the ballot, among other campaign work. We imagine his pitch while door knocking was something along the lines of “Vote for me, I’ll take your money!”

While he didn’t win that year, the 2006 race helped establish Monserrate as the heir apparent for the Senate seat, which he won unopposed in 2008. Seems that campaign pitch worked.

In 2012, Monserrate pleaded guilty to two counts of mail fraud with sentencing set for later in the year. Well, Hiram, you win some, you lose some.