The Wall Street Journal reports that New York state officials who edited early versions of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) latest book, which details his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, have been subpoenaed.
This is the latest development in an investigation being run by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York.
According to the Wall Street Journal’s report, investigators, with the subpoena, are seeking contracts and other “materials used to pitch the book to publishers.”
Cuomo’s book, “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic,” was published by Penguin Random House towards the end of 2020. According to financial records, the book has landed Cuomo upwards of $5 million.
Former federal prosecutor Michael Weinstein explained to the Wall Street Journal why the documents that have been subpoenaed may be important.
“If reflections memorialized in records and notes are inconsistent with what he was saying publicly or with disclosures to health or government officials, that is potentially problematic,” Weinstein said.
This particular investigation is looking into whether Cuomo broke any laws with his handling of the coronavirus pandemic. This is all part of the coronavirus scandal that Cuomo has found himself at the center of.
Cuomo is one of those Democratic governors, who on March 25, 2020, ordered recovering COVID-19 patients to be sent to nursing homes, despite warnings that the elderly were likely the most vulnerable demographic. Many argue that this policy decision likely led to unnecessary coronavirus-related deaths among the elderly in New York.
On top of this, Cuomo and his administration have been accused of covering up the true number of coronavirus-related nursing home deaths.
Cuomo, thus far, has survived heavy criticism and calls for his resignation. Cuomo, in defending himself, has claimed that the attacks against him are merely political.
“They wanted to blame nursing home deaths on that order,” Cuomo said. “They then wanted to blame a report that clearly said how COVID got into nursing homes had nothing to do with March 25th. They’ve taken every attempt to politicize it and blame Democratic states. They then not only politicized that, they tried to criminalize it.”
Cuomo has yet to comment on reports of this new subpoena.