Andrea Stewart Cousins ​​won’t address $637 million Hochul ‘pay to play’ scandal

State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart Cousins ​​repeatedly refused to discuss the $637 million “pay-to-play” scandal on Thursday swallow the government.Cassie Hochul — She said she was happy with her fellow Democrats’ vague denial of wrongdoing.

At an unrelated press conference in her district, Stewart Cousins ​​(D-Yonkers) — who manages the state’s legislative agenda with Ho-Chol and Congressman Carl Heastie (D-Bronx) — said from the Post: Didn’t answer questions. Republicans demand Congress launch probe into COVID-19 testing contract Awarded to one of Hochul’s top campaign donors.

“I have no comment on that,” Stewart Cousins ​​said.

“I certainly know the Republicans have asked for it, and they said — apparently, I think the governor has answered. At this time, I will not respond.”

The state’s No. 3 elected official was also recalled by the same reporter for her partisan attack on the 2015 corruption conviction of Republican predecessor Dean Skelos, or when Democratic lawmakers “Cover one of their own.

“There is nothing I can do to enlighten you right now,” replied Stewart Cousins.

State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart Cousins ​​was pleased with Cathy Hochul’s response on the issue.
AP/Hans Pennink

Heastie did not return requests for comment on the potential investigation.

Hochul Compete with challenger Senator.Lee Zeldin (R-Long Island) New Jersey-based Digital Gadgets has been paid $637 million to supply the state with 52 million COVID-19 test kits since it was revealed in July. , the election is on the defensive.

The consumer tech company is owned by Manhattan resident Charlie Tebele, who along with his family donated approximately $330,000 to Hochul’s campaign.

Tebele’s no-bid contract indicted new york According to the Albany Times-Union, which first went public with the deal, it averaged $12.25 per kit, more than 80% more than the $6.75 California paid for the exact same rapid at-home test.

Earlier this week, the paper also revealed that just four days after Tiber, Hochul had suspended competitive bidding rules for the purchase of pandemic-related supplies. hosted the 22 fundraiser for her.

Payments to his company began a month later, according to Times Union.

In his most extensive public comment yet regarding the deal with Digital Gadgets, Hochul claimed to reporters on July 20th:

Kathy Horchul
When asked about the Hochul scandal, Stewart-Cousins ​​said, “I have no comment on it.”
Getty Images for Concordia Sumi

“I haven’t tracked it down. My team, they don’t know anything,” she added.

Republican Speaker Nick Langworthy, a candidate for the Northern State Legislature, criticized the Democrats’ refusal to investigate Hochul as “the cozy rot that we seek to dismantle by bringing balance and accountability back to Albany.” “A classic example of a Cabal that did it.”

“Democrats turn a blind eye to each other’s corruption, and Ho Chul knows he doesn’t have to answer Congress or Congress. [Democratic Attorney General Letitia James]but is urging voters sick of corruption to take back power and remove her from office this November.

Nicole Mariotakis (Republican, Staten Island, Brooklyn), former member of the U.S. Representative State Legislature, said Stewart Cousins ​​would “pay twice as much for COVID tests that her voters escaped from the governor and sold to the government.” We should be concerned that we are forced to do so.” State by one of her biggest campaign donors.

“This is corruption and New Yorkers should be answered and held accountable,” she added.

Senate Majority Leader Rob Oat (R. Lockport) accused Democrats of “allowing corruption within their own party.”

“If Senate Democrats want to earn their credibility in restoring public confidence in government, they will stop colluding and immediately begin investigating these disturbing allegations.

Former Republican Congressman Al D’Amato called the digital gadget deal “unbelievable” and said Hochul was making his predecessor, the former governor. Andrew Cuomo resigned over sexual harassment allegations – ‘Looking like a choir boy’.

“New York spent twice as much money as California. It’s a crime,” he said.

“She sold herself with a $300,000 donation.”

Nick Langworthy
Nick Langworthy condemned Hochul for refusing to investigate.
AP Photo/Seth Fu

US Delegate Elise Stefanik (R-Glens Falls) said, “The firing of Stewart-Cousins’ corrupt Kathy Hochul’s pay-for-play scheme is the reason the Republicans are victorious across New York State this November.” I predicted.

“New Yorkers are fed up with the rampant corruption in Albany,” she said.

Meanwhile, John Kaehny, executive director of the Reinvent Albany Reform Group, said he believed it was politically “wise” for Stewart-Cousins ​​to remain a mother. What you do with your partner.

“I still have a lot of basic questions about this that I would like to know if I were President of the Senate. How did this happen? What was the conversation with Tiber?” he said.

“She could also say the governor needs to come clean about this and dismiss these accusations.”

Kaehny also said his group called for a federal investigation “because the test kit was purchased with federal funds” and “the federal government is ready to investigate this thoroughly.” said he did.

When asked for comment, Hochul’s spokesman referred to Tuesday’s statement denying Tibere’s donation had affected his contract, saying the governor “does not oversee the procurement process and is responsible for the day-to-day We were not involved in the procurement decision,” he said.

“She simply directed the team to purchase as many available tests as possible to meet the tremendous need across the state, and they did just that to keep New Yorkers safe. I did.

A spokeswoman for James declined to comment.

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