The Times’ focus on Governor Cuomo’s supporters among real estate developers shines a bright light on a bunch of guys that also have supported Golden over the years
Merely mentioning the Moreland Commission and Real Estate Developers in the same article makes Golden and his supporters very nervous — rightfully so — a narrower inquiry into what the governor or his people did (like Christie in New Jersey), and when he/they did it, would not be nearly so upsetting
Which did you hear first, the noise of the NY Times bomb going off or its immediate massive echo around New York ? My bet is that most people heard about the Times article before they read it, if they ever get around to it. I certainly heard about it first; and I linked to the article and read it at around 4:00 AM this morning
According to a reporter of inside goings-on in Albany, “Today’s New York Times story on the Cuomo administration’s extensive meddling in the now-defunct Moreland Commission is exhaustive and comprehensive, laying out in detail the (successful) effort by the governor’s top aide, Larry Schwartz, to derail any lines of investigation that might expose or embarrass the executive. *** But while the piece notes that US Attorney Preet Bharara is now investigatig the commission’s demise – shut down by Cuomo in exchange for agreement on an ethics reform package by legislative leaders – it does not directly address the question of what laws may have been broken during this entire mess, and by whom” (See “Did Anyone Break The Law?” by Liz Benjamin, 7/23/14, State Of Politics - NY [http://www.nystateofpolitics.com/2014/07/did-anyone-break-the-law/#disqus_thread]). That is a rather late and nifty echo, which actually pivots the story to what Liz Benjamin wanted to talk about — what possible laws were broken and by whom. So the Times’ story about whether the Governor interfered with the most recent Moreland Commission or just was properly steering and managing an ethics inquiry got morphed by Liz Benjamin’s column into an inquiry about, as yet undefined, crimes; and the guilt or innocence of, as yet unnamed, perpetrators. Or, to put it another way, the Times’ writers are telling a story about what was going on, whereas Ms. Benjamin wants to tell why it’s all so bad.
Before the smoke clears in all of this, the story will be told and retold, and it will be contradicted and even rebutted. During all of that, the prior clear or fuzzy focus will be refocused and even redirected. That’s where the danger is for out local Republican-Conservative State Senator Marty Golden and others like him.
The New York Times article described in great detail how commission investigators were getting too close to the Governor’s supporters in parts of New York’s real estate establishment; how the Governor’s operators tried steering them away; and then how the Governor shut it all down, citing a legislative deal that made the commission moot ( See “Cuomo’s Office Hobbled Ethics Inquiries by Moreland Commission” by Suzanne Craig, William K. Rashbaum & Thomas Kaplan, 7/23/14, NY Times/ NY Region [http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/23/nyregion/governor-andrew-cuomo-and-the-short-life-of-the-moreland-commission.html?ref=nyregion&_r=0]). If you’ve followed the stories about State Senator Golden’s dealings with-and-for real estate developers, you’ll know why the Times’ glaring spotlight on what the Governor and his people did would make those hoping to stay in the shadows very uncomfortable.
You only have to mention Moreland Commission and real estate developers to Golden or any of the senior members of his staff, and you’d surely have to break out the epipens before somebody’s airway constricts. The encyclopedic Times article did all of that, minus any reported need for an epipen. That’s why making the ongoing investigation something more like Liz Benjamin's pirouette - to looking for specific people committing specific crimes - might be preferable. Preferable, that is, to anybody, who’s not Governor Cuomo or a member of his staff — somebody like Marty Golden, for instance.