A New York Assemblyman says he was yelled at and threatened by Gov. Andrew Cuomo after criticizing his dealing with of COVID-19 deaths at nursing properties — which is now being regarded into by the FBI.
Queens Democrat Ron Kim accused the governor of obstruction and different wrongdoing after an AP report discovered his administration misrepresented the variety of deaths in nursing properties by 1000’s. One of Cuomo’s prime aides was additionally heard telling lawmakers that the administration took months to launch knowledge revealing how many individuals dwelling at nursing properties died of COVID-19 as a result of officers “froze” over worries the knowledge was “going to be used in opposition to us” by former President Donald Trump’s Justice Department.
Now Kim says Cuomo is “trying to punish me” for talking out.
In a Zoom interview with NBC New York on Wednesday, Kim broke down and had to finish the dialog after recounting how the livid governor referred to as him at house, when he was along with his spouse and children.
“He spent 10 minutes berating me, yelling at me, threatening me and my career,” Kim stated. The lawmaker stated that his spouse heard a lot of the interplay, and was shocked and scared, saying she “didn’t sleep that night.”
Kim is certainly one of many now in Albany, from each side of the political aisle, accusing the administration of a cover-up, saying it was executed to “protect (Cuomo’s) politics, his political future.”
Assemblyman Ron Kim says the governor yelled at him and threatened to finish his career after the Queens Democrat accused the Cuomo administration of overlaying up deaths at nursing properties. NBC New York’s Jonathan Dienst reviews.
A senior aide to the governor stated that he was within the room when the decision was made, and alleged that “Mr. Kim is lying about the conversation.” During a name with reporters, Cuomo went after Kim.
“I said to him on the phone, ‘There is still integrity and honor and decency in politics,’” the governor stated.
Cuomo addressed the dialog the 2 had, saying there may be previous unhealthy blood between the 2 politicians from Queens. Cuomo stated it stems from a previous unrelated concern through which he accused Kim of switching sides on nail salon security so as to elevate marketing campaign money from the salons.
“I believe it was unethical, if not illegal, and I believe it’s a continuing racket,” the governor stated.
Kim brushed apart that take, saying it exhibits “a lack of leadership” to carry up the nail salon debate “when 15,000 have lost their loved ones in nursing homes.” On Wednesday, Cuomo once more tried to placate households who lost family members, saying his failure to present nursing house knowledge sooner was a mistake — noting that it was “not illegal, not unethical. But just failed people in that moment.”
Families are nonetheless not shopping for that rationalization from the governor.
“Governor Cuomo turned nursing homes into COVID death chambers,” stated Tracey Alvino, who lost her 76-year-old father Daniel after he was in a Long Island nursing house for simply 11 days to get better from an orthopedic operation when COVID hit. She stated Cuomo wants to answer households’ issues.
“His feet need to be held to the fire, we need an independent at the state and federal level,” stated Alvino.
The alleged incident comes because the Brooklyn U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI open a preliminary investigation into the Cuomo administration’s dealing with of nursing home-related knowledge, in accordance to a senior officers accustomed to the probe. Spokespeople for the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI declined to remark.
Some politicians on the nationwide stage, together with Iowa Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, have additionally referred to as for an investigation into the governor’s dealing with of nursing properties.