June 12, 2017

Andrew Cuomo’s Unethical Administration Worse Than Previously Thought

The culture of corruption festering in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration is an even bigger problem than was previously imagined according to Newsday. With the trial of former Cuomo insider Joseph Percoco approaching in October, discovery disclosures show that prosecutors looked at a “wider array of aides to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and administration associates than previously disclosed”:

“Investigators probing New York’s economic development initiatives have collected banking, telephone and email records from a wider array of aides to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and administration associates than previously disclosed. According to a recent filing in the federal case, prosecutors have sought records from more than a dozen individuals, companies and campaign accounts that were not named in a 2016 indictment that alleged key officials and developers were involved in rigging bids for some of the state’s biggest projects.”

Particularly disturbing is that many of those individuals involved are still in taxpayer-funded senior positions in the Cuomo administration, including even the “current head of the state Ethics Commission”:

“The list includes a number of current and former Cuomo aides and associates: Howard Glaser, Cuomo’s former director of operations; Joseph Rabito, the current secretary of intergovernmental affairs; Gil Quinones, the president and CEO of the New York Power Authority; Aimee Vargas, Cuomo’s director of downstate governmental affairs; and Andrew Kennedy, Cuomo’s former deputy director of operations. Investigators also sought records for a phone number once assigned to Seth Agata, Cuomo’s former assistant counsel and current head of the state Ethics Commission.”

Andrew Cuomo’s upcoming bid for national office hinges on the impression that he was a successful governor of New York. Yet the continued ethical problems of his administration will be a stain on his reputation that could make that impossible.