By Roger Stone My talented colleague Mike Murphy wrote an op-ed for the Boston Globe in which he fantasized that former New York Governor George Pataki wins the New Hampshire Primary in an upset by highlighting the federal debt issue. Evidently, Murph is unaware of Pataki's record on spending and debt during his three terms as Governor. Under George Pataki, State debt grew from $14.4 billion in 1990 to $48.5 billion in 2006. New York ranks second highest in combined state and local debt per capita after Alaska, a state that benefits from huge oil reserves. Between 1996 and 2001, New York had annual surpluses of between $450 million and $3 billion. Instead of using those surpluses to reduce debt, the State actually increased borrowing. During that time, outstanding debt increased an average of 5.1 percent a year while State spending increased an annual average of 4.4 percent. The New York State Constitution requires voter approval of debt. To circumvent this, Pataki loaded so-called "independent" state authorities with debt. Most State-funded debt is issued through authorities - $44.6 billion of the $48.5 billion. In addition, public authorities have another $81.5 billion of debt that is not supported by State revenues. Based on his record, Pataki has no credibility on the question of public debt.