Feb 19, 2021 - Politics & Policy

AOC calls for "full investigation" into Cuomo's handling of nursing homes

AOC
Photo: Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) released a statement on Friday calling for a "full investigation" into New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's handling of COVID-19 in nursing homes.

Why it matters: Cuomo's handling of nursing home deaths has been under scrutiny for months, but the backlash has become increasingly bipartisan after audio leaked of a top Cuomo aide saying a Democratic request for nursing homes data was rejected because the administration feared it could "be used against us" by federal investigators.

The big picture: The results of an investigation released last month by New York Attorney General Letitia James, also a Democrat, found that the Cuomo administration undercounted deaths in nursing homes by as much as 50%.

  • Cuomo has dismissed any assertion of wrongdoing. New York State Assemblyman Ron Kim (D) claimed this week that Cuomo threatened to "destroy" him over comments he made about the widening scandal.
  • The FBI and U.S. attorney's office in Brooklyn are reportedly investigating the administration's handling of nursing homes.

What they're saying: "I support our state’s return to co-equal governance and stand with our local officials calling for a full investigation of the Cuomo administration’s handling of nursing homes during COVID-19," Ocasio-Cortez, a progressive who has clashed with the moderate Cuomo in the past, said in a statement.

  • "Thousands of vulnerable New Yorkers lost their lives in nursing homes throughout the pandemic."
  • "Their loved ones and the public deserve answers and transparency from their election leadership, and the Secretary to the Governor’s remarks warrant a full investigation."
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