There’s a pretty major flap going on, considering it’s an election year, over a temporary “independent” commission appointed by Governor Cuomo, supposedly to “root out” corruption in the State’s capital. The commission was headed up by Onondaga County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick. The commission was disbanded – some say “abruptly”, others say because it was “mission accomplished” – a month or so ago.
Last week the New York Times published a very detailed piece more or less chronicling gross interference with the independent (not) commission by the governor’s men. This prompted a ringing defense of the commission and its independence (not) by Chairman Fitzpatrick in the form of a three page letter dated July 28th, which you can find here.
First, I encourage you to read Fitzpatrick’s letter. Whatever its merits otherwise, it is typical DA bluster, long on rhetoric, short on specifics, and completely devoid of anything resembling reasoning. It’s a screed from someone who seems to think that all he need do to dispose of accusations of corruption is to call them “absurd”. Not one fact chronicled in the New York Times piece is even specifically denied, let alone refuted.
There’s a lot to say about all this, but not now. In the meantime, it’s worth noting that some people whose opinions I respect believe this whole flap is orchestrated by the Clinton camp to damage Cuomo, a political rival for the 2016 presidential nomination. And that may well be. Multiple levels of perfidy and skullduggery are standard procedure in the political cesspool known as New York State.
But we’ll comment later on some larger aspects of all this, endeavoring to wed the macro to the micro, one of our favorite tasks over here at Lawyers on Strike. We sometimes do a good job of that, and we sometimes don’t, but we do make the effort.
To be continued.