While millions of New Yorkers suffered during the coronavirus pandemic and thousands of small businesses closed their doors permanently, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, D-N.Y., was having the time of his life.
His approval ratings were way up.
His daily coronavirus press conferences were covered nationally, almost daily, on live television.
He was also a frequent guest on his brother’s (Chris) evening primetime show on CNN where they would joke about who was mom’s favorite son.
The reality was anything but humorous.
We now know that Gov. Cuomo’s coronavirus task force is under federal investigation for its handling of nursing home and long-term care facilities during the pandemic.
Last Spring, the New York State Health Department issued an order directing nursing homes and long-term care facilities to accept residents who were recently discharged from area hospitals despite the fact that many of them were still testing positive for COVID1-19.
A move, many have argued — and backed up with data — may well have led to the deaths of nearly 15,000 elderly residents.
It’s true, nursing home and long-term care staff could have spread the virus as well, however, the directive is what’s catching everybody’s attention — including federal investigators.
Making matters worse, last month Gov. Cuomo admitted that his administration withheld nursing home and long-term care deaths from lawmakers, the public — and the press.
The Cuomo administration was reporting 8,500 deaths, but the real number was actually more than 15,000.
It doesn’t take a seasoned political strategist or public relations expert to see that this is clearly a big problem for Cuomo, and his administration.
It’s a combination of a legal, political and public relations disaster.
All fingers point back to the governor’s office.
On May 1, 2020, CNN’s Editor-at-large Chris Cillizza published a piece about his colleague Chris’ older brother titled, "Andrew Cuomo may be the most popular politician in America right now" for his handling of the pandemic.
However, we now know that reality paints a much different picture of Gov. Cuomo and his handling of the pandemic.
It’s not a very good one.
That’s not all.
Now Gov. Cuomo fnds himself embroiled in two sexual harassment allegations forcing him to offer apologies earlier this week during a press conference.
Such claims have prompted New York State Attorney General Letitia James to open an independent investigation to look into the alleged incidents.
To say that Gov. Crash and Burn Cuomo’s political future is in limbo is an understatement.
With multiple controversies surrounding the governor’s office, his aspirations for running for a fourth term in New York are in jeopardy. And forget about 2024 presidential aspirations — those are gone.
In America, we believe in "innocent until proven guilty."
But, in the court of public opinion, he’s already guilty.
His poll numbers are declining .
Recent polling has the governor’s approval rating dropping to 33% — a huge drop from the 78% approval rating he enjoyed last Spring.
In the book of Proverbs it says, "pride comes before a fall."
And Gov. Cuomo is certainly falling.
Mark Vargas is a trusted adviser and close confidant to some of the highest profile political and business leaders in America. From 2007 to 2010, Mr. Vargas served as a civilian within the Office of the Secretary of Defense on a special Iraq task force. In 2009 he was awarded the Secretary of Defense Global War on Terrorism Civilian Service Medal. His civilian service included 14 trips to Baghdad. Follow Mark on Twitter: @markavargas. Read Mark Vargas's Reports — Click Here Now.
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