A new report has revealed that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was offered more than $4 million to write a book about his leadership during the pandemic. What really will chap your backside is the fact that this offer was made after he implemented the horrific policy that cost thousands of lives in nursing homes across the state.
The report, published by the New York Times, says that Cuomo had his aides seek out the book deal while also tasking them with editing a report that showed he was a villain in this mess and not a heroic figure as he tried to pass himself off to be.
“An impending Health Department report threatened to disclose a far higher number of nursing home deaths related to the coronavirus than the Cuomo administration had previously made public. Ms. [Melissa] DeRosa and other top aides expressed concern about the higher death toll, and, after their intervention, the number — which had appeared in the second sentence of the report — was removed from the final version,” the Times reported. “The revisions occurred as the governor was on the brink of a huge payoff: a book deal that ended with a high offer of more than $4 million, according to people with knowledge of the book’s bidding process.”
A Times examination found that Cuomo’s book deal “overlapped with the move by his most senior aides to reshape a report about nursing home deaths in a way that insulated the governor from criticism and burnished his image.” It also overlapped with glowing coverage from the Times and other media outlets.
Another of Cuomo’s top aides, Stephanie Benton, was directed to ask assistants to prints portions of the manuscript’s draft and bring them to the governor’s mansion. On one occasion, the request came on the same day that DeRosa gathered other top advisers to discuss the Health Department draft report that could crush the governor’s image.
Cuomo’s book, “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the Covid-19 Pandemic,” portrayed him as a hero despite New York seeing more deaths than all but one other state (California). The Times also reported that Cuomo’s use of his aides to write and edit the book may run “afoul of state laws prohibiting use of public resources for personal gain.” The staffers used their personal email accounts to discuss the book, rather than their official government accounts.
One of Cuomo’s staffers, who wished to remain anonymous due to fear of retaliation for speaking out, told the Times that she, along with other members of the staff, were given the task of taking Cuomo’s notes, which were on occasion dictated into his phone, and typing them up for the book.
There are really only two things this guy deserves. The first is to be booted from his office. The second is a prison cell and an orange jumpsuit.