Late last year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York wrote a book patting himself on the back for his self-perceived masterful handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Anyone who was actually paying attention—meaning everyone but the mainstream media—understood the absurdity of Cuomo’s claim to supreme competence. This was the same man, after all, who had caused the deaths of roughly 11,000 elderly New Yorkers with his indefensible order to place virus patients into nursing homes. Had the press not been fully preoccupied with blaming every cough and sniffle on President Trump, his incompetence would have been a huge story.
And whaddayaknow — now that President Trump is no longer in office, it is. Except we now know that mere incompetence was the least of Cuomo’s offenses. It was outright malevolence and deception.
Melissa DeRosa, the secretary to the governor and widely considered to be one of the most powerful New York state officials, told lawmakers on a video call Wednesday that the administration withheld additional death totals while facing both federal and state inquiries. Or put another way — they lied.
DeRosa explained that the Cuomo administration “froze” out of fear that the true numbers would “be used against us” by federal prosecutors. That is quite the admission, considering that is the primary reason any guilty party hides evidence from prosecutors.
Amazingly, both Democrats and Republicans are calling for Cuomo to be stripped of his pandemic emergency powers in response to the call, with some going further to demand investigations and even the governor’s resignation.
DeRosa was apparently not the only one having an attack of conscience over this travesty, as Cuomo was already facing criticism after a report from his own far-left attorney general accused his administration of undercounting nursing-home deaths. New York AG Tish James said the Cuomo administration undercounted the deaths by specifically by omitting those who likely contracted the virus in a nursing home but died in a hospital.
This is by far the most pressure Cuomo has been under in his political career, with 14 Democrat state senators calling for his emergency powers to be taken away by the Legislature.
Asked to explain why the governor’s office was taking so long to release an audit of the nursing-home death numbers, DeRosa offered the following statement:
“I was explaining that when we received the DOJ inquiry, we needed to temporarily set aside the Legislature’s request to deal with the federal request first,” DeRosa wrote. “We informed the houses of this at the time. We were comprehensive and transparent in our responses to the DOJ, and then had to immediately focus our resources on the second wave and vaccine rollout.
She added: “As I said on a call with legislators, we could not fulfill their request as quickly as anyone would have liked.”
That’s an understatement.
It’s worth noting that Cuomo actually won an Emmy for his (in)famous COVID pressers, which now makes total sense seeing as how he was merely acting like a competent and responsible governor. And while the bipartisan outrage at his indefensible actions is a welcome breath of fresh air, there has been no word on why Cuomo isn’t considered to be guilty of negligent homicide at the very least, considering at the time of his order to move patients into nursing homes it was well known that the elderly were far more vulnerable to the virus than any other segment of the population.
It’s also curious that Democrat lawmakers aren’t demanding an outright resignation, seeing as how former Democrat Gov. Eliot Spitzer was forced to resign over a visit to a prostitute, which while awful in its own right is considerably less serious than the offenses committed by Cuomo.
But this is a new day and a new Democrat party. It’s frankly surprising that this was exposed at all. One can only wonder if AG James may have her eyes on the governor’s mansion.
Stay tuned, as this story is likely far from over.
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