NEW YORK — Amid several other scandals, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is now being accused of prioritizing COVID-19 testing for his relatives and close allies in the early days of the pandemic, when tests were scarce.
New reports from the Washington Post and the Times Union in Albany claim the governor directed high-ranking state health officials to give special access to COVID tests to his mother, his brother, CNN anchor Chris Cuomo and his family, and at least one sister, some multiple times.
According to the Times Union, testing often took place in private homes, with state troopers then rushing the samples to the state lab in Albany.
Cuomo’s close allies, including Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton and his wife, and MTA head Pat Foye, also reportedly received priority access to COVID testing.
A spokesperson for Cuomo denied the allegations and pointed out that they also offered door-to-door testing in New Rochelle when it was a hot spot early on in the pandemic.
The new accusations couldn’t come at a worse time for the embattled governor, who is already under investigation for his highly publicized nursing home scandal and multiple sexual harassment allegations.
Cuomo said on Wednesday that anyone who thinks he can’t do his job right now, doesn’t understand how it works.
“The nature of being governor is, there are always multiple situations to deal with. The past four years we had to deal with Trump as president. You want to talk about distractions? That was a distraction,” Cuomo said at a press briefing.