Andrew Cuomo

Did Cuomo Violate Ethics Rules by Having Aides Help Him With Memoir?

The book, which garnered a $4 million deal and touted Cuomo's purported pandemic-handling competence, may have gotten the governor into hot water.

|

On Wednesday, The New York Times reported that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, used office staff to work on his memoir, American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic—which garnered a $4 million dollar book deal—in potential violation of ethics rules.

The Albany Times Union reports that when the governor had communicated plans to earn outside income from publishing a book, Judith Mogul, Cuomo's special counsel, had advised him that no "state property, personnel or other resources may be utilized" according to New York's long-standing ethics rules, which he had agreed to. Still, top aides like Melissa DeRosa (whose name might ring a bell if you've followed some of the many Cuomo scandals from earlier this year) were heavily involved in editing and pitching the book, and more junior aides were involved in typing notes for the governor and transcribing things he said, since he voice-dictated many parts of the book. The New York Times also reports that "a top aide to the governor, Stephanie Benton, twice asked assistants to print portions of the draft of the book, and deliver them to Mr. Cuomo at the Executive Mansion in Albany, where he lives."

Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi told the Times Union that the Cuomo staffers who worked on the governor's memoir had volunteered their own time to do so, adding that there is "nothing in law or regulation that speaks to a ban on state workers volunteering for a for-profit venture — this simply is not legally a 'thing.'" (Cuomo's office did not respond to Reason's request for comment by time of publication.)

But those heading up the Cuomo impeachment investigation have decided to look into this further to discern whether state resources were improperly used for the governor to line his own pockets.

The governor has had waves of scandal washing over him in quick succession for the last few months; most recently, Cuomo got roundly lambasted when news surfaced that he had secured special treatment for his own family members and other well-connected VIPs during the early days of the pandemic. There's the most famous scandal—the March 25, 2020, directive which required nursing homes to admit or re-admit COVID-19 patients regardless of whether they'd tested negative for the virus—and the way the administration subsequently hid the true nursing home death count, which was about 40 percent higher than they had claimed. There's the much more underground scandal, that the governor issued an April 10 directive, in parallel to the March 25 one, which similarly prohibited residential facilities for adults with intellectual disabilities from turning away COVID-positive patients. There are the sexual harassment scandals that have emerged in recent weeks as nine women have come forward with allegations of inappropriate behavior, ranging from unwanted sexual comments all the way to groping and kissing. And, of course, the vaccine scandal where medical providers in the state were forced to throw away precious vaccine doses due to the threat of $1 million fines being levied if providers allowed anyone to hop the state-mandated vaccination line.

This guy is unsinkable. But then again, we're talking about someone who had both the extraordinary gall and terrifyingly large ego to write a book on just how great of a pandemic leader he was and make a fat advance off of it, while his state-employee "volunteers" scurried around to do his book bidding.

Maybe the real American Crisis is the fact that, though we tally up the manifold transgressions (maybe even crimes) of Andrew Cuomo, corrupt and inept leaders like him get to remain in office—and sell some books while they're at it.

NEXT: Vermont Is Prioritizing 'BIPOC' Households for Vaccines. That's Almost Certainly Unconstitutional.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Yes?

    1. One feels like if this was some icky MAGA Republican and not the Progressive Hero of the Pandemic, the headline wouldnt be written as a question.

      1. JOIN PART TIME JOB FOR USA Making money online more than 15$ just by doing simple work from home. I have received $18376 last month. Its an easy and simple job to do and its earnings are much CC better than regular office job and even a little child can do this and earns money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info
        on this page…..VISIT HERE

    2. Hmm, won’t be impeached. Won’t be prosecuted. Won’t lose a penny of his royalties.

      Not seeing much hot water here.

      1. Yep, protected class.

        1. What’s the point of being one of the kings if you have to follow the same rules as the peons?

    3. [ PART TIME JOB FOR USA ] Making money online more than 15$ just by doing simple works from home. I have received $18376 last month. Its an easy and simple jobGTR to do and its earnings are much better than regular office job and even a little child can do this and earns money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info
      on this page…. Visit Here

    4. [ PART TIME JOB FOR USA ] Making money online more than 15$ just by doing simple works from home. I have received $18376 last month. Its an easy and simple job toGTR do and its earnings are much better than regular office job and even a little child can do this and earns money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info
      on this page…. Visit Here

    5. My last pay check was 8750 dollars just ecom working 12 hours for every week. My neighbor have found the estimation of 15000 dollars for a long time and she works around 20 hours for seven days. I can not trust how direct it was once I tried it information………..USA PART TIME JOB.

    6. LIFE CHANGING OPPORTUNITY BE an Internet HOME-BASED real Earner.I am just working on facebook only 3 to 4 hours BVGF a Day and earning £47786 a month easily, that is handsome earning to meet my extra expenses and that is really life changing opportunity. Let me give you a little insight into what I do….. Visit Here

    7. [ PART TIME JOB FOR USA ] Making money online more than 15$ just by doing simple works from home. I have received $18376 last month. Its an easy andUIO simple job to do and its earnings are much better than regular office job and even a little child can do this and earns money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info
      on this page…. Visit Here

    8. LIFE CHANGING OPPORTUNITY BE an Internet HOME-BASED real Earner.I am just working on facebook only 3 to 4 VHJNhours a Day and earning £47786 a month easily, that is handsome earning to meet my extra expenses and that is really life changing opportunity. Let me give you a little insight into what I do….. Visit Here

  2. Well, Christ, I see from the news there’s been another attack on the Capitol, I hope we can get an update from AOC on what happened once she stops shaking over her near-death experience.

    1. By attack, do you mean a peaceful protest, an actual attack, or just a story made up by a media outlet based on absolutely no real-life events?

      1. We may never really know. Whatever it is, it will be used as an excuse to give our overlords even more power. They better get started on that two billon dollar fence to keep themselves safe. It totally won’t look like we live in a banana republic when they raise that up.

    2. lived experience; it can happen from anywhere

    3. “Capitol Police confirmed the car hit two officers in front of the barricade”

      Biden should not be allowed to drive anymore… at least it wasn’t a farmer’s market, I guess.

      1. White Knight probably has his hands in his pants right now and is moaning “Insurrection”.

        1. Dude, I’m eating!

  3. The democrat party has gone full racist and cavorts with amoral billionaires. They have no need for truth and the media covers their tracks. Expecting them to become honest for once is ludicrous.

  4. Did Cuomo Violate Ethics Rules by Having Aides Help Him With Memoir?

    This is helpful analysis. I think our time is better spent on this stuff than anything to do with a massive criminal enterprise he was running in covering up nursing home deaths.

  5. If using state resources to kill a couple thousand people didn’t get him in hot water, then what’s the big deal about using them for a book?

    1. Because it lets us talk about something besides killing a couple thousand people and covering it up. It’s a very big deal.

      1. Because if you’re a 2021 progressive, you have to believe that all punishments should be inversely proportionate to the crime.

  6. Clearly Andrew Cuomo is Presidential material. Cuomo 2024!

  7. If the ethics rules didn’t want to be violated, why were they dressed like that?

    1. Kudos

  8. “…and touted Cuomo’s purported pandemic-handling competence,..”

    Sumbitch is a laugh riot, ain’t he?

  9. So asset forfeiture the book royalties and advance, and pay off 3 seconds of the national debt.
    Then jail him and the co-conspirators.
    Oh, wait; New York, democrats.

  10. Maybe Cuomo’s defense theory is to keep releasing new scandals to the media so the NY Atty General will have to keep expanding the investigations before trial until his term is up.

    1. Don’t laugh. Some have already theorized that this is his strategy.

  11. No, because the rules are whatever he says they are. That includes ethics rules.

  12. Was Fredo too busy to help?

    1. Fredo can’t read.

      -jcr

  13. Not as much as the murders.

  14. Sounds like he’s just as secure on his throne as Putin is in Moscow. Aren’t “Democrats” great?

  15. Bet’s he is reelected to a fourth term.

    I swear this guy could reopen Auschwitcz, write a book bragging about it, and he would still get more than half of the liberal Jewish votes in NYC.

    1. Or, as former Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards said, “the only things that could ruin my political career would be to get caught with a dead girl or a live boy.”

      1. That’s so outdated (unless Edwards was a Republican). Senator Gerry Studds was caught with a live boy in the 1983 Congressional Page sex scandal (the date is needed to distinguish it from the other such scandals), and was reelected 2 or 3 times before he retired. (But the Republican Senator caught with a live girl in the same scandal resigned.) Way back in 1969, Ted Kennedy was caught in Chappaquiddick with a dead girl; this may have ended his hopes to run for President, but he remained the most popular politician within Massachusetts for life.

  16. This implies that there were ethics for him to violate.

  17. Nothing ever happens to this cocksucker. Gov.Nipple Rings seems to be untouchable.

  18. So can we assume that Major League Baseball will boycott New York to protest the murdering, unethical and nepotistic conduct of its governor who systematically abuses women?

    1. You may assume that. You may also assume the elections were fair and honest, and that the sun rises in the west.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.