Former Governor Andrew Cuomo has returned to television in a series of new political advertisements. Some seven months after Cuomo resigned from office, the advertisements try to rehabilitate his …
Former Governor Andrew Cuomo has returned to television in a series of new political advertisements. Some seven months after Cuomo resigned from office, the advertisements try to rehabilitate his name while criticizing the state attorney general’s report that accused him of sexually harassing at least 11 women.
The campaign-style ads portray Mr. Cuomo as the victim of the attorney general’s report, implying that he was pushed out of office by politically motivated attacks.
The ads use splices of real reporting in order to misleadingly suggest to viewers that the accusations against Cuomo have crumbled since he left office. In fact, while several district attorneys declined to bring criminal charges they did say that they found Cuomo’s accusers to be credible.
Cuomo is using some of the millions of dollars he previously raised in campaign funds to pay for the commercials. Although he’s made no indication about returning to political office, the latest efforts to rehabilitate his image following his resignation, as well as his deep pockets flush with unspent campaign cash, is enough to convince some in New York politics that he wants to return to the big stage. Many are already speculating if he would launch a primary challenge against his one-time deputy and now incumbent Governor Kathy Hochul.
Cuomo’s ad ultimately ends up with the tagline, “Political attacks won. And New Yorkers lost a proven leader.”
We beg to disagree.
We should never forget that disgraced former Gov. Cuomo was also accused of using government resources to publish his now-famous book, of which he pocketed millions of dollars in royalties.
Then there is the mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The new political ad does not address how Cuomo’s administration misreported the number of COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes by under reporting them during his administration.
Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli’s office recently released an audit which concludes that the State’s Department of Health (DOH) understated the number of nursing home deaths due to COVID-19 by at least 4,100, and at times during the pandemic by more than 50 percent.
State auditors also found that DOH did not provide the public with accurate COVID-19 death counts and became entangled in the undercounting of those deaths as the Executive (the governor’s office) took control of information provided to the public.
“The pandemic was devastating and deadly for New Yorkers living in nursing homes. Families have a right to know if their loved one’s COVID-19 death was counted, but many still don’t have answers from the state Department of Health,” DiNapoli said. “Our audit findings are extremely troubling. The public was misled by those at the highest level of state government through distortion and suppression of the facts when New Yorkers deserved the truth.”
The deaths in nursing homes during the pandemic are a terrible tragedy as well as Mr. Cuomo’s abuse of power during his now tainted administration in allegedly abusing women and using public employees for his own benefit.
New Yorkers deserve better.
We do need a proven leader – and Mr. Cuomo is certainly not our choice.
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