Could top aides to Gov. Andrew Cuomo resign before Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul takes office in less than two weeks?
That question has been posed, particularly after Hochul’s comments this week that no one named in the damning Attorney General’s report released last week would be permitted to stay on in the new administration.
Hochul also announced this week that she would seek a full-term as Governor next year.
Melissa DeRosa was the first to resign. She did so before Gov. Cuomo announced his own resignation. Next are senior advisor Rich Azzopardi and director of the governor’s office Stephanie Benton.
Political spectators say their resignations could come at any time. “They’re both named repeatedly in the attorney general’s report, and they are the type of close aides to a governor that you would expect to leave with that governor,” Gotham Gazette Editor Ben Max said.
Health Commissioner Howard Zucker has also drawn criticism, specifically for his role in the pandemic. It’s unclear whether he will be asked to stay-on as part of Hochul’s administration. He’s also not named in the report, but has been central in other scandals involving Gov. Cuomo- specifically those to do with pandemic guidance in March, April, and May of 2020.
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