By Adam Andrzejewski for RealClearPolicy
While the state was shut down at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and 56,000 people eventually died, now-disgraced ex-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo was writing a book about his leadership.
He landed a $5.1 million book deal with Crown Publishing Group for “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic.”
At the time, the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics gave Cuomo the go-ahead, saying there wasn’t a conflict of interest — a decision they recently rescinded.
While Cuomo says his staff voluntarily worked on the book on their time off, some have said it wasn’t voluntary.
“It was not optional,” a former staffer who asked to remain anonymous reportedly told the Times Union newspaper. “It was considered a part of your job.”
The state attorney general is investigating whether Cuomo broke the law and used his aides to work on the book, allegedly using state resources for personal gain.
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When Cuomo got permission from the state ethics board, they said it was to be done on “his own time and not on state time,” and “no state property, personnel or other resources” could be used, The Associated Press reported.
That board recently revoked its permission, according to the New York Post.
Now Cuomo, who resigned in disgrace in August over sexual harassment allegations, must reapply for the board’s OK, and if denied, he may have to give back some, if not all, of the $5.1 million to Crown Publishing.
A governor who focuses his efforts on writing a book to earn him millions in the midst of a pandemic that killed 56,000 people certainly doesn’t have his priorities straight at best and at worst, used taxpayer resources to line his pockets.
Syndicated with permission from RealClearWire.
The #WasteOfTheDay is presented by the forensic auditors at OpenTheBooks.com.
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