A group known as the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), whom the Los Angeles Times has described as a liberal watchdog, released its annual report on the Worst Governors in America. Surprisingly, two Democrats made the list. Not surprisingly to New Yorkers, one of those Democrats was Governor Cuomo.
Cuomo is categorized in the CREW report as a “sideshow” due to his failures in transparency and cronyism.
Via Capitol Confidential:
The left-leaning good government group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has released its second report on “The Worst Governors in America,” and Andrew Cuomo has been included. The report, which includes criticism of only two Democrats and 16 Republicans, knocks Cuomo on what CREW sees as transparency and cronyism failures.
The report references the TU’s 2012 stories on the removal from public view of previously disclosed documents from Cuomo’s tenure as attorney general.
Here is the excerpt on Cuomo from the CREW report:
TRANSPARENCYGov. Cuomo has been criticized as having “a transparency problem”stemming from efforts to block access to records from his time as governor and as New York’sattorney general.The governor does not use e-mail to conduct state business.His aides do not regularly discuss substantive issues over e-mail, and some routinely delete their electronic inboxes and sent messages.Instead, Gov. Cuomo and his aides tend to communicate by phone or through the BlackBerry PIN-to-PIN message system which, unlike e-mail, does not pass through a server and cannot be recovered once deleted.Gov. Cuomo adopted a previous New York state archives policy concluding many e-mails are “not records and are therefore suitable for immediate destruction” and expanded it to include “all electronic communications, whether by e-mail, text, or BlackBerry pin.”Since Gov. Cuomo took office, his aides have sought to withhold documents from his time as attorney general from public review, going so far as to remove records that had already been made public from the New York state archives.In addition, Gov. Cuomo encouraged the formation of a tax-exempt group, the Committee to Save New York (CSNY), which spent millions received from mostly anonymous donors to support the governor’s agenda with television ads.The group received $2 million from gambling interests shortly before Gov. Cuomo began explicitly advocating for expanded gambling, including in his State of the State address.In 2011, Gov. Cuomo signed ethics legislation requiring the disclosure of donors to lobbying organizations like the CSNY.Donations to the CSNY dried up after the new disclosure law was implemented.The organization declined to engage in fights over Gov. Cuomo’s 2013 budget, partially out of concern that the new lobbying law would bring public scrutiny to donors.