State Sen. Kevin Parker’s temper has once again made it into the headlines after he got into a shouting match with freshman state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi at a recent meeting of the Democratic Senate conference.
Biaggi had objected to being lectured by Parker at the meeting over the proper use of social media, especially given Parker’s recent controversy on Twitter. The two elected officials then exchanged some heated words, before Parker took off his tie, threw it on the ground and stomped out of the room.
This controversy is just the latest for Parker, a lawmaker who has a long history of making explosive remarks and getting involved in scuffles – both inside and outside the state Capitol. A whole section of his Wikipedia page summarizes how a hot temper has landed him in trouble ever since he first entered the state Senate in 2003. While he has been better at staying clear of controversy in recent years, his latest outburst will surely help him reassert his status as the state Senate’s go-to avatar of incivility – especially since fellow Brooklyn state Sen. Marty Golden is leaving the chamber.
Here is a rundown of Parker’s most notable eruptions.
2005 – Parker’s temper came to public attention early in his career as a state senator. He was arrested in 2005 for punching a traffic agent who was giving him a ticket for double parking. In order to resolve a misdemeanor assault charge, Parker agreed to participate in an anger management program.
2005 – A legislative staffer accused Parker of threatening her in an Albany restaurant after she accused him of shoving and hitting her when she was working as his office manager.
2008 – An argument in Parker’s Brooklyn campaign headquarters got physical in 2008. The Daily News reported at the time that Parker pushed his aide Lucretia John while they were arguing about an unknown issue, knocking her glasses off her face. Parker then intentionally smashed the glasses by stomping on them, John later told police.
2009 – Parker was convicted of misdemeanor criminal mischief after he reportedly damaged the camera of a New York Post photographer in May 2009. The state senator was arrested after he reportedly chased the photographer, who had used a flash to take Parker’s picture outside his mother’s house. Then Parker sat on the hood of the journalist’s Subaru Forester and tried to grab the camera when he returned, breaking it in the process. Though Parker was eventually cleared of felony assault charges, he was sentenced to three years’ probation.
2009 – Parker also raised eyebrows that year for calling then-Gov. David Paterson a “coke snorting, staff-banging governor” after Paterson cut off some pay for senators amid a partisan fight for leadership of the chamber. While Parker initially stood by the comment, he later apologized to Paterson and praised him for his honesty about past drug use and extra-marital affairs.
2010 – Parker reportedly charged toward state Sen. Diane Savino during a contentious meeting of Senate Democrats. The incident began during a discussion about whether then-state Sen. Hiram Monserrate should have been expelled from the chamber following his own conviction for misdemeanor assault. Parker opposed Monserrate’s expulsion and reportedly called Savino a “bitch” and dropped some “f-bombs,” the Daily News reported at the time. "Do you want a piece of me?" he reportedly asked Savino’s boyfriend, then-Senate Deputy Majority Leader Jeff Klein, after Klein intervened.
2018 – Parker tweeted, “Kill yourself!” at GOP political operative Candice Giove after she called him out on Twitter for misusing his parking placard. Parker deleted the tweet and apologized for “a poor choice of words” later in the day, but then provoked additional controversy less than an hour later. He suggested in a follow-up tweet that Giove, deputy communications director for state Senate Republicans, deserved such treatment because of her past work for the now-defunct Independent Democratic Conference. She has been “on the wrong side of history for every important issue facing New York State!” Parker added in a third tweet. Since then, Parker has resigned as chairman of New York City Councilman Jumaane Williams’ campaign for public advocate.
2019 – A shouting match erupted between Parker and freshman state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi at an April meeting of the Senate Democratic conference. Biaggi took offense at being lectured by Parker about the proper use of social media, especially since only months before Parker had told a GOP political operative via Twitter to kill herself. In response to Biaggi’s criticism, Parker got personal by accusing the Bronx Democrat – whose grandfather was a U.S. congressman – of being “born on third base” and believing “she hit a triple,” The New York Times reported. Biaggi yelled right back at him and asked if he were threatening her. After some more back and forth, Parker took off his tie, threw it on the ground and stomped out of the meeting – but not before declaring that he was “unbeatable” in any future Democratic primary.
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