A Governor in Isolation: How Andrew Cuomo Misplaced His Grip on New York
Longtime advisors and allies helped the governor navigate the series of crises and provided advice. They include two former top advisors, Steven M. Cohen, former secretary to the governor, and William Mulrow, another former secretary to the governor who now works for private equity firm Blackstone. Melissa DeRosa, the governor’s chief adviser; Mr. Cuomo’s pollster Jefrey Pollock; and Beth Garvey, special adviser to the governor.
The result on Wednesday was an unusually unsettled CEO who made emotional apologies for his behavior but insisted that he had “not touched anyone inappropriately” and did not intend to resign.
“Aside from the palace intrigue, there is a job to do and the New Yorkers have elected the governor for it,” a governor spokesman Richard Azzopardi said in a statement. “So he’s focused on getting as many shots in the arms as possible to make sure New York gets its fair share of the Covid aid package in Washington and working on a state budget due in three weeks.”
Individuals in contact with Mr. Cuomo’s team described some employees – especially younger ones – as demoralized and exhausted as a number of controversies extend beyond a year of navigating Covid-19 in an exceptionally demanding environment.
Several employees have left his office in the past few days for various reasons. Among those who left are Gareth Rhodes, who served as a member of the state coronavirus task force and was a frequent guest star during Mr. Cuomo’s press conferences, and members of his press team.
As the legislature enters high-level budget negotiations, even Mr Cuomo’s traditional allies recognize that his influence has taken a blow.
“It made his job more difficult,” said Jay Jacobs, New York State Democratic Party leader, who said he spoke to Mr. Cuomo on Thursday. “If you are under this pressure, it will affect the level, the degree of your political strength.”
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