Feb. 18, 2021 By Christian Murray
The feud between Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio appears to have been ratcheted up a notch—with the mayor accusing Cuomo of bullying Queens Assemblyman Ron Kim.
The mayor said that he “100 percent” believes Kim’s account of the dispute the Assemblyman has had with Cuomo.
Kim said Cuomo threatened to “destroy him” during a harsh phone call on Thursday, following Kim accusing the governor of seeking to cover up the death toll at nursing homes.
Cuomo allegedly demanded that Kim change his statement related to the nursing home scandal.
De Blasio on MSNBC’s Morning Joe this morning said that “a lot of people in New York State have received those phone calls,” adding that “that’s classic Andrew Cuomo.”
“The bullying is nothing new. I believe Ron Kim and it’s very, very sad,” de Blasio said during the MSNBC interview.
Cuomo, however, has accused Kim of “lying,” and denies that the threats were made.
At a press briefing later this morning de Blasio also lashed out Cuomo.
“Someone being bullied is not acceptable, and Ron Kim was trying to raise real concerns and honest concerns on behalf of families in the city, in this state, who have lost loves,” he said. “That deserves respect and he wasn’t given it.”
Cuomo’s latest dispute with Kim began after the New York Post reported that a top aide to Cuomo admitted that his administration had withheld nursing home death data out of fear that it would be used against them by federal prosecutors.
Kim was quoted in the NYPost story saying that it appeared as if the governor was “trying to dodge having any incriminating evidence.”
On Tuesday, Kim doubled down and accused the governor of “obstruction of justice,” a charge Cuomo denies.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn and the FBI are reportedly investigating the Cuomo administration’s handling of the nursing home deaths, according to Albany Times Union.
De Blasio said at the press briefing endorsed the need for an investigation.
“We’re talking about thousands of people who were lost…and the questions need to be answered to make sure nothing like this ever happens again.”