Close this search box.

Republicans Receive Subpoenas From Anti-Corruption Commission

albanyNew York’s anti-corruption commission has issued subpoenas demanding information from Republicans, but the panel established by Gov. Andrew Cuomo has not apparently made such demands of Cuomo’s fellow Democrats in a recent flurry of subpoenas aimed at political organizations.

An official familiar with the case told The Associated Press on Thursday that the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption issued subpoenas to the state Senate Republican Campaign Committee and the state Independence Party seeking information on housekeeping accounts, which have few limitations on donations they accept or how they spend the cash. The official wasn’t authorized to comment on the action and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

State Republican Committee spokesman David Laska confirmed his group also received a subpoena but wouldn’t comment on what it is seeking.

The Independence Party, an influential minor party that works closely with Republicans in the state dominated nearly 2:1 by Democratic votes, also confirmed its subpoena but refused to comment further.

The Assembly’s Democratic majority hasn’t received a subpoena, said spokesman Michael Whyland. He said the Assembly Democratic Campaign Committee’s housekeeping follows all the rules as is publicly posted.

A spokesman for the state Democratic Committee, headed by Cuomo, didn’t respond to requests for comment. Spokesmen for the Democratic Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and Democratic Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said they have received no requests for information from the commission.

Commission spokeswoman Michelle Duffy declined comment.

“We don’t comment on potential or ongoing investigations,” she said.

The Independent Democratic Conference which shares majority control of the Senate with Republicans has no housekeeping account, said spokesman Eric Soufer. He said the IDC hasn’t received any subpoenas.

Michael Murphy, spokesman for the Senate Democrats who are the chamber’s minority party, wouldn’t comment on whether it received any subpoenas. The Senate’s Republican majority also refused to comment.

On Friday, Independence Party Chairman Frank MacKay told the AP the party is in full compliance with campaign law.

Real estate interests had been subpoenaed by the Moreland Commission, but these recent subpoenas are the first to be used on campaign committees and political organizations.

A week ago, the Legislature refused a request by the commission for information about lawmakers’ outside jobs, which drew a sharp rebuke from the commission, calling the decision “legally indefensible, ethically repugnant.”

The commission isn’t technically authorized to investigate the legislative branch. But through a novel approach, Cuomo directed the commission to examine campaign records.

The commission is trying to investigate the connection between campaign contributions and the influencing of legislation.


Leave a Reply

Popular Posts