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THE CAPITOL CONNECTION: What’s a brother to do?


I KEEP WONDERING what Papa Cuomo is thinking as he floats up there among the clouds. Both of his boys have been subjected to terrible epithets by their enemies. Andrew got his because he is and always has been a bully and that finally caught up with him. His brother, Chris, seems to be a nice guy who people instinctively liked.

Andrew was accused of doing things that people in the public eye are not supposed to do, with sex at the top of that list. He is also being investigated by the feds and the legislature for possibly not telling the truth about hospital admissions and nursing homes deaths at the onset of the Covid pandemic. It seems to me that Christopher is being tarred for having been born a brother to an important person, stepping beyond journalistic boundaries by giving his brother advice and then, maybe, lying to his bosses at CNN about having done so. I guess that must rank pretty high in the in the statute book, somewhere near “murder.” Look, when your political enemies come after you, they Really come after you. I’ll bet a lot of politicians are shaking in their shoes for having given or taken advice from people associated with the press. Maybe a few of them are worried about having been involved in inappropriate touching.

It could be that CNN and its chief, Jeff Zucker, didn’t have much of a choice. They were taking it on the chin from all of their news rivals. The incoming was so brutal that they gave up defending the younger Cuomo brother and instead, fired him. Don’t cry too hard, though—Chris and his family will not starve. CNN will make its way forward. But this has to be a tough time for the Cuomo clan. Andrew must be crying in his beer. I keep wondering what happened to the now famous $5 million-plus book deal. At the center of that deal was a boast about all of his accomplishments when he so favorably occupied the public eye. Let’s try to remember all of those months when Cuomo would appear on CNN practically every day, acting as the heroic and sensible alternative to Trump. If you think about it, the disappearance of Trump may have been the worst thing for Andrew. The former governor went from being a knight of the roundtable to a thug.

My friend Eliot Spitzer exemplified the “what not to do” when he touched the third rail of politics, sex. Hey, did Ike Eisenhower have a girlfriend? Did FDR? Did Eleanor Roosevelt? So what? If Andrew Cuomo did something that was against the law and that standard was applied to every American male or politician, you’d have to start building prisons all over America to house the offenders.

I have asked a lot of people whether Chris Cuomo should be held accountable for helping his brother. Siblings have been helping each other since the beginning of time. I ask whether they would have helped their siblings under the same circumstance. The non-politician folks I have been talking to have been near unanimous in their understanding of what was going on between the brothers. On the other hand, Chris knew that if he violated the public trust, he would be risking a great deal. The chickens have come home to roost

Every day, one can hear the most obscene lies on Fox. We have always known that Republican sympathizers have a double standard for acceptable conduct. Donald Trump still walks around without handcuffs, despite his lies and insults and sexual aggressiveness. That may not make Chris Cuomo’s behavior acceptable but it sure is something to think about.

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