The media is reporting with frantic urgency about a scandal involving the Democratic governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo. This is the same governor who instated a policy in the spring of 2020 requiring nursing homes to admit COVID patients. Many thousands of elderly perished because of that policy. The alleged cover up — Cuomo’s aides allegedly underreported the official fatality numbers in order to downplay nursing home deaths — is only now coming fully to light. This is, without question, a major scandal. But that is not the scandal that the media has plastered all over its headlines. It is not what has prompted fellow Democrats to call for his resignation. It is not the scandal that forced Cuomo to hold a press conference and publicly apologize for his behavior. No, what sparked that level of attention and backlash are sexual harassment allegations against the governor.
It appears that we are putting the deaths of thousands of human beings to the side for the moment so that we can focus on the apparently even more serious charge that Andrew Cuomo made inappropriate remarks to a few women. The Washington Post has the details on those accusations:
Former top staffer Lindsey Boylan… said her uncomfortable experiences with Cuomo dated to 2016. In December of that year, she said, her boss informed her that the governor had a “crush” on her… In October 2017, she said, the governor suggested they play strip poker. And in 2018, she said, he gave her an unwanted kiss on the lips. Cuomo and his office have denied the details of the allegations but have called for an investigation.
The second on-the-record accuser is another former aide, Charlotte Bennett… said that, in June, Cuomo asked her a number of questions about her personal life, including whether she had been intimate with older men. She said he also talked about being open to a relationship with a woman in her 20s…
A third accuser… Anna Ruch said she had never met Cuomo when he placed his hand on her bare lower back at a September 2019 wedding and then, after she removed it, placed his hands on her cheeks and asked if he could kiss her.
Some of these comments are inappropriate to varying degrees. Some of them — like a woman hearing from a third party that the unmarried Cuomo has a crush on her — can’t reasonably be construed as sexual harassment on the part of Cuomo himself. The unwanted kissing and touching is, again, inappropriate, but not much different from, or worse than, the handsy behavior for which President Biden is famous. And certainly none of this rises to a level that puts it in the same ballpark, city, or universe as the nursing home scandal.
Yes, the inappropriate comments and the policy that killed thousands of elderly people are both bad. But saying “both are bad,” as if to lump the offenses together in the same category, is like saying “both are bad” when you find out that Ted Bundy not only murdered 17 people but also once stole a guy’s parking space at Walmart. It may be true that both things are bad, but the one thing so outweighs the other, and is such a vastly bigger deal, that it seems silly to spend significant time discussing the lesser offense. It’s quite a bit worse than silly when the bigger deal is treated as the addendum to the smaller one.
It’s hard to avoid the conclusion that the Left has latched onto the sexual harassment scandal as a way to distract from the far more damning one. The other option is that the timing is all one big coincidence. Perhaps the media developed a sudden yet sincere interest in Cuomo’s behavior towards women, after spending the past 11 months singing his praises from the rooftops, and the fact that it is now drowning out the story about Cuomo’s reckless endangerment of the most vulnerable in his state is purely incidental. That’s always a possibility but I wouldn’t bet on it. If we’ve learned one thing about the media, it’s that distraction is one of their favorite tactics.
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
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