George E. Pataki

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Governor George Pataki served three terms as the 53rd governor of New York state, from 1995 through 2006. First elected in 1994, he won re-election in 1998 and 2002. He says that his focus was on energy, environmental and corporate matters.

Before becoming Governor, he was an attorney with Chadbourne & Parke LLP, and before that he was a partner in the New York law firm of Plunkett & Jaffe until 1987. He was elected mayor of Peekskill, New York in 1981, and served in the New York State Legislature as an assemblyman and then a senator from 1985 to 1994, before becoming governor.

The puff pieces say about his tenure:

"During his tenure as New York’s chief executive, Governor Pataki advanced award-winning, cutting-edge policies in the renewable energy and environmental fields. His initiatives included the protection of over one million acres of open space, the adoption of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, the implementation of the nation’s first green building tax credit, landmark brownfield legislation and programs to enhance the production and use of alternative energy like biodiesel, ethanol, fuel cells and clean coal.


"In 2005, BusinessWeek named Governor Pataki one of the top 20 “Individuals who stand out for their efforts to cut gases that cause global warming” in the world. Also, in 2006, Vanity Fair called him a governor who “gets it” in its “Green Issue” for his efforts concerning the environment." [1]

Documents & Timeline

1992 Pataki defeated State Senator Mary Goodhue, for whom he had once worked, in a bitter primary.

1994 Jul 11 the "Republican Eagles" election update on California and New York. (A newsletter circulated to the Tobacco Institute). The "Eagles program" was run by RNC Chairman Halley Barbour who has repeatedly said "There is no more important race in the country than the re-election of Pete Wilson"

  • Wilson's Campaign Manager was George Gorton, of Sacramento.
  • State Senator George Pataki endorsed against Cuomo for New York State Governor. He had Rob Ryan as Campaign Manager.


[Note: Craig Fuller of PM later resigned to run the Wilson for President campaign, and Rupert Murdoch and PM executives became prominent funders, junket givers, and supporters of Pataki.]

1994 Dec 12 Rupert Murdoch, now on the Board of Philip Morris with his two Australian friends R William Murray (Chairman) and Geoffrey Bible (CEO) in charge, has asked a number of his friends to attend a fund-raiser for Governor-elect George Pataki (and Senator Alphonse D'Amato) [2]  

1997 Philip Morris annual grants to helpful tax-free 501(c)3 institutes.
Payments controlled by Andrew Whist, External Affairs
Libertad$100,000 Administration payment via PM's External Affairs division
New York Society for Int'l Affairs$150,000
American-European Community Assn (USA)$300,000
The above three organisations were all created by Andrew Whist purely for lobbying purposes. Libertad was nominally run by David Morse and Paul Dietrich. Their actual headquarters were in Whist's New York apartment.
Hungarian-American Chamberof Commerce
of NY and NJ Inc.
$175,000 Administration payment via PM's External Affairs division
Spain-US Chamber of Commerce Inc$10,000
US-Spain Council$10,000
The Hungarian organisation was used to fund NY Governor Pataki's junkets to Hungary.
The two Spanish organisations were controlled by Whist, who provided administration, etc. via Philip Morris and used them to run political junkets.


Philip Morris lawyer-lobbyists, David Morse and Paul Dietrich, (successively) ran the Knights of Malta organisation on the East Coast. Governor Pataki was as Knight. Nominally, they also were the 'founders' of Libertad, and they used the New York Society for International Affairs and American European Community Association as cover for some of their lobbying activities.

1999 Oct 15 Andrew Whist at Philip Morris had organised two separate junkets (1995 and 1996) to Hungary, and accompanied Pataki on these trips. The funding was all conducted through the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce. The deals were exposed and the Philip Morris internal "News Highlights" of October 15 1999 records an Associate Press report:

NEW YORK: During a previously-scheduled news conference yesterday, Gov . Pataki denied having any knowledge of corporate contributions to the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce, which funded his trips to Hungary in 1995 and 1996, though he said it made perfect sense to him that multinational corporations such as Philip Morris, Bristol Meyers and

Pfizer would contribute to the Chamber. (AP)

New York Governor George Pataki, asked about corporate contributions to the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce, which allegedly helped the Chamber fund his trips to Hungary: "I have no knowledge that anyone in my administration had any idea as to the members of the chamber ." (AP, 10/15/99)

"To me, the fact that major New York corporations like Pfizer, Philip Morris, Bristol Myers and others are members of the Hungarian-(American) Chamber of Commerce is who you'd expect to be members of the Hungarian-AmericanChamber of Commerce . You don't expect Santa Lucia Pizzeria to be a member of the Hungarian-American Chamber of Commerce," (AP, 10/15/99)[3]

2007 Jan The retirement of Republican Governor George E Pataki of New York who was actively supported by Philip Morris, Rupert Murdoch and News Ltd/Fox, and the Koch brothers. He left office in Jan 2007 and was replaced by Democrat Eliot Spitzer.

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch articles


  1. George E. Pataki, Chadbourne & Parke, accessed January 22, 2008.