New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo publicly wagged his finger at the scandal-ridden New York legislature, attempting to depict himself as the model of public integrity he is NOT. What Cuomo does best is to make noble-sounding rules for other guys to follow, rules which don’t apply to Imperial Governors.
You know how it works. Keep your State Police security guard close, and free, independent minded citizens at a distance. Unless they’re already shown to be solidly in your camp (meaning “submissive”), they can’t be trusted, Cuomo believes.
Cuomo routinely uses the instruments of state power to pummel political enemies and allies alike. When he was Attorney General, he went after disgraced former Gov. Elliot Spitzer (and fellow Democrat) for using state planes, automobiles, and helicopters for personal use.
According to reports, Spitzer would fly down to Hooker Haven in D.C. to meet with high-priced call girls. He paid for the women out of his own pocket (and his wife’s pockets, too) but the travel arrangements were courtesy of the state taxpayers.
As Imperial Governor now, Gov. Andy also feels entitled to spend hard earned taxpayer money on his personal self-indulgences. Instead of living in Gracie Mansion, provided to him by the taxpayers, he uses state aircraft to fly down to West Chester to visit his live-in billionaire BFF girlfriend Sandra Lee.
According to an account in the Wall Street Journal, Cuomo’s daughters live with the BFF GF, too. All the benefits of marriage—without marriage. Is that to give the affair the air of respectability?
A better air of respectability would be for the governor to marry Sandra Lee. That may be his personal business, of course, but when you’re governor of a state, you forfeit the privacy a private individual might expect.
It comes with the turf. If you don’t want your personal beliefs analyzed, then stay home with your GF, wherever that is. Otherwise, everything you do sends a political message.
The message New York is getting is that of an Imperial Governor who flaunts the rules he touts in public.
Cuomo abolished the previous ethics committee and established a new one with people who worked for him, people he knew would look the other way as he misused state resources, and retaliated against critics.
Lest these concerns be seen as the steaming detritus of a gossip column, let’s be clear on two things:
Governor Cuomo has not paid IRS federal taxes on these purloined “in-kind” gifts by New York taxpayers. When common ordinary taxpayers are paid “in-kind” (meaning you get a car, a free hotel stay in Vacationland, or a Rolex watch instead of cash money), it counts as income under IRS rules and is taxable.
Governor Cuomo has not reimbursed the taxpayers for these “gifts” of taxpayer largesse. Doing so would eliminate the tax problem posed by undeclared “in-kind” income, and would be in keeping with New York State law.
Of course, New York State law and a submissive voter base has never been anything an Imperial Governor had to worry about.