NY Taxpayers Foot Gov. Cuomo’s $2.5 Million Legal Defense Tab

NY Taxpayers Foot Gov. Cuomo’s $2.5 Million Legal Defense Tab
(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

It’s a legal nightmare for Gov. Andrew Cuomo – but not for his wallet.

Back in February New York Attorney General Letitia James announced her intent to deputize a law firm to conduct an independent investigation into the sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo, who is facing such allegations from no fewer than eleven women. The investigation intensified last month with James’ office issuing subpoenas to former aides who accused Cuomo of harassment, that would require four of the accusers to testify under oath.

Cuomo is also fighting allegations that he used staffers to help write his book on his supposed pandemic leadership, and that he and his administration covered up the death roll in nursing homes.

It’s going to be a costly series of battles for him – but the taxpayers of New York will be footing the bill.

As the New York Post reported:

Taxpayers are being forced to shell out more than $900 an hour for Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s lead defense lawyer.

The $2.5 million deal, revealed in a contract made public through a Freedom of Information Request by The Post, was struck even though Cuomo sold the rights to his coronavirus memoir for $5.1 million and has around $17 million in his campaign war chest.

Cuomo — who leads the nation’s governors with a $225,000 annual salary — defended his decision to stick hard-working and heavily taxed New Yorkers with his legal bills. “The state — the way it works is the Executive Chamber has retained the counsel and that is a state expense,” he said during a news conference at Manhattan’s Javits Center.

Asked if he was paying any other lawyers out of his own pocket or with campaign cash, Cuomo said, “Not at this time.”

New York ranks seventh when it comes to lifetime taxes paid by residents, and much of those dollars goes towards waste like this. A recent study compared taxes paid by residents in different states and the quality of government services in those states to calculate a “taxpayer ROI.” New York ranked 44th (with 50 being the worst).

Matt Palumbo is the author of Dumb and Dumber: How Cuomo and de Blasio Ruined New YorkDebunk This: Shattering Liberal Lies, and Spygate


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