Former Gov. George Pataki, who frequently tussled with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver during his three terms as governor, released a statement on Friday saying his arrest suggests a broader problem with the expansion of government at both the state and federal level.

Pataki, a Republican considering a run for the presidency in 2016, said the allegations against Silver “are shocking and cast a poor reflection” on state government if true.

“The charges filed against Speaker Silver yesterday, if proven true, are shocking and cast a poor reflection on the State government I was so honored to lead for 12 years,” Pataki said. “But sadly, these events and others like it are just the most obvious outgrowth of a larger, more insidious problem. Simply, the unchecked expansion of government power, whether in Albany or Washington is a danger to our democracy.”

Silver is now part of a long line of elected officials in state government who have been arrested and charged with corruption, with a pace that is seemingly increasing year after year.

Pataki said he backs “universal reforms” such as term limits and banning elected officials from “the revolving door of lobbying”

Pataki said the Silver case suggests that government become “an insider game of fixers and moneymen” with too many loose regulations governing ethics — a problem he said extends to Washington, D.C.

“Loopholes, carve-outs and sweet heart deals are ever easier to exploit, as our government grows larger, more complex and more opaque,” Pataki said. “This is the case in our state capitol and in our nation’s capitol.”

Pataki during his tenure negotiated the budget and legislative priorities alongside Silver and Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno for 12 years.

Earlier in the day, Bruno blasted federal prosecutors who “run amok.”

“They run out of control, they do anything they want to do to anyone in the country,” Bruno said.

The Republican former majority leader’s own corruption conviction was overturned and he was later found not guilty in a subsequent re-trial.

Here is Pataki’s full statement:

Statement From Former Governor George E by Nick Reisman