In their enthusiasm to be rid of Eliot Spitzer, many news outlets have overstated the firsts in David Paterson’s, and his father Basil’s, biographies.
As has already been widely note, Paterson is not the nation’s first legally blind Governor, that distinction belongs to Bob Reilly of Arkansas.
And Basil Paterson was not the first black man to be nominated for statewide office by a major party. That would be Edward Dudley who was the Democrat-Liberal candidate for Attorney General in 1962, years before Basil Paterson even entered the State Senate.
And surely Basil was not, as Herb Boyd stated last night on NY One, the first African-American to serve in the NY State Senate, although Basil did succeed the first African-American woman, Constance Baker Motley, who’d left to replace Dudley and become the third African American to serve as Manhattan Borough President (the first was Hulan Jack, elected in 1949), as well as the first woman of any color to serve on the old Board of Estimate.
But the prize for lazy stupid lameness in the age of google goes to Stewart Ain of "Jewish Week"; behold: “[David Paterson] becomes the state’s first black Governor and the first with a handicap”.