Publisher’s Corner: Questions surrounding criminal case against Cuomo

Former Governor Andrew Cuomo speaking to reporters at the Governor’s Mansion in March 2021.

All of a sudden, there is the possibility that Andrew Cuomo may go to jail.

A woman has complained that Cuomo had her brought to the governor’s mansion to fix his phone and, according to her story, he put his hand into her blouse to feel her breast. So far, this is the only one of the complaints lodged against the former governor that is considered to be criminal. The complaint was very specific, basically saying that Cuomo’s touching was both unwanted and unwelcome. This misdemeanor offense could bring Cuomo into the criminal justice system and, if he is found guilty, may be punishable by up to a year in jail. That would be extraordinary, considering the fact that Cuomo once prosecuted criminal cases in New York County.

Of course, this is a case of “not so fast.” She says he did it, he says he didn’t. It may be up to a judge or jury to decide the matter. Since the days of the cave, men have been coming on to women. We know that part of this story is involves Andrew’s power as governor. Perhaps he believed that the power that goes along with being governor allowed him to come on to women. Ironically if he had stayed married or faithful to a single woman, he might not be in this mess. It is fascinating that so many people in the political class are so wrapped up in anti-Cuomo activities that this might appear to some to be just one more nail in the proverbial political coffin.

There’s a possibility that those politicians who have tried to deal Cuomo out one way or the other are behind this latest accusation. There has been some speculation that Andrew might choose to enter the gubernatorial primary for the 2022 election and that he might actually win in a crowded field.

A few things need to be investigated here. For example, this latest accusation against Cuomo apparently did not involve the excellent district attorney of Albany County, David Soares, who I should point out is a first-rate regular participant on WAMC, the public radio station I run. Soares has regularly refused to prosecute cases that don’t meet his tough standards. Remember that time those college professors stood on the grass outside the Capitol and Soares refused to prosecute them? Maybe that’s why he wasn’t included in the coming indictment of Cuomo.

One can only wonder whether former governor Cuomo will be indicted and then jailed as a result of the Albany sheriff’s investigation which was not joined by the sitting district attorney. Let no one forget that Cuomo has been under attack by many politicians in New York. Soares can hardly be seen as a friend of the former governor, so leaving him out of this process smells like fish on a hot summer day.

With that said, I want to point out that I am not exactly a friend of Cuomo’s, either. A series of self-inflicted wounds during our radio conversations may have led to the current situation in which Cuomo is the goat. It was obvious that he did not want to speak with me on the radio after he put his foot in his mouth, suggesting that he was inviting his mother and daughters to the Executive Manson for Thanksgiving dinner during COVID after he had told everyone else to stay home. That turned out to be a sterling example of political hypocrisy at a time before the slew of sexual allegations against the governor got into high gear.

I’m willing to bet that Cuomo will not be jailed and maybe not even convicted in this case, despite the fact that an awful lot of people are pretty sure that the complaint against him is justified.