Back in February, former New York Governor David A. Paterson announced he'd be joining the faculty at New York University. "I thought I was going to sit in the sun," Paterson told WORS 710-AM. "But I've come back."
And today, The Wall Street Journal reports that Paterson will be teaching a seminar entitled, "The Teachable Art of Governing." The new course will meet once a week for 2½ hours and is open to freshmen students enrolled in the College of Arts and Science's honors program.
The course description of Paterson's new class reads, "This course offers a view into the day-to-day working knowledge of politics. The key parts of politics examined in this course are how and why people get into politics, campaign and advertising strategies, representation, governing from the legislative and executive branch, managing credit and blame for policy, state budgeting, and specific case studies on areas of current policy change. The focus will be largely on current issues, specifically gay marriage and the obesity tax framed by classic studies of politics."
After decades in the New York state senate and in other official roles, Paterson took control of the governorship in 2008 after Eliot Spitzer resigned over a sex scandal. He struggled with a notoriously obstinate state legislature, once likening his job in Albany to drowning in quicksand.
Paterson's term as Governor also had no shortage of scandals. Gothamist has a heyday thinking up his likely syllabus:
"Waiting to Fire Your Staffer Who Beat Up His Girlfriend," "Lying About Free World Series Tickets," Signing 6,709 Line Item Vetoes," "That Time I Was Maybe Going To Make Caroline Kennedy Senator" or "My Aide Couldn't File His Taxes On Time."
Maybe he'll just teach the course using Governor Andrew Cuomo as an example? Earlier this week Paterson heaped praise on the popular first-term Governor, particularly impressed by his handling of the recent same-sex marriage bill and the property tax cap. "I would have to classify Gov. Cuomo with Houdini," he said. "I was there, and I can't tell you how he made that happen. It's just stunning."