Allegations of sexual misconduct and a cover-up of covid deaths are piling on New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but underlying his survival is his corporate regime.
Tagged “the $100 million man,” in 2018, Cuomo had one of the country’s largest campaign war chests, with cash that fueled “a pay-to-play environment where donors got lucrative state contracts,” Democrat and Chronicle reported.
According to a review of records by the USA Today Network’s Albany Bureau, Cuomo’s campaign coffers are filled with donations from companies with business before the state.
Cuomo amassed $100 million in campaign contributions since first running for governor in 2010, and he has served since 2011.
Business wins over taxpayers, Cuomo critics say. Still, according to recent polls, the governor’s support remains strong among the Black electorate with nearly 70 percent of Black voters in a recent Siena College poll saying Cuomo should not immediately resign, the New York Times reported.
Here are five reasons Black America should be skeptical of the corporate Cuomo regime in New York.
Multiple women have accused Cuomo, 63, of sexual harassment or inappropriate behavior, resulting in calls for his resignation. While he has apologized, he said he won’t step down and suggested that those pushing him out are politically motivated and driven by cancel culture, The New York Times reported.
Cuomo has so far survived while others — especially in corporate America facing similar accusations — did not. “In corporate America, where the Me Too movement has felled executives at hundreds of public companies in recent years, he would be less likely to get the same leeway,” Bloomberg reported.
Looking for Black support to help save his image, Cuomo has sought out local Black leaders who fell in place behind him.
At a recent event in Harlem, “one Black minister or political figure after another rose to offer praise for Cuomo, with the leader of the state’s chapter of the N.A.A.C.P., Hazel N. Dukes, even referring to the governor as her son, insisting that ‘he ain’t white,’” The New York Times reported.
In 2016, Cuomo and then-Governor of New Jersey Chris Christie commiserated on how to handle the fallout from the September 2013 George Washington Bridge lane closures. They agreed to release a report covering up the incident, claiming the lane closures were the result of a traffic study, Politico reported. The George Washington Bridge connects New York and Fort Lee, NJ.
An investigation found that the lanes were closed intentionally to cause the massive traffic problem for political reasons as retribution against Fort Lee Mayor Mark Sokolich, a Democrat, who had not supported Christie as a candidate in the 2013 New Jersey gubernatorial race.
In 2018, hospitals, nursing homes, and their lobbyists gave $2.3 million to Cuomo’s political apparatus, Jacobin reported. In April 2020, Cuomo signed legislation shielding hospital and nursing-home executives from lawsuits related to the coronavirus outbreak. It was pay-for-play, critics said.
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The governor has been accused of concealing how many nursing home residents died in the pandemic. An aide spoke out and claimed reports had been rewritten to undercount thousands of deaths, NYT reported.
Was this a coverup to help nursing homes stay in business and remain friendly to Cuomo’s corporate regime or to make the governor look like he was going a great job protecting New Yorkers during the pandemic? An investigation is underway.