Rob Astorino, the Republican candidate for the office of New York Governor, has a new campaign ad out that hits Governor Andrew Cuomo hard for his use of Hurricane Sandy funds to run de facto campaign ads touting the tourism and business climate in New York. Roughly $40 million set aside for victims of the storm were siphoned off to use for airing election-year, feel-good television ads.
Astorino’s new ad features various New Yorkers still displaced by Hurricane Sandy nearly two years ago. One child asks Cuomo, “Are your ads more important than my family, Governor?”
From a NYGOP press release:
When Hurricane Sandy hit New York almost two years ago, thousands of New Yorkers saw their homes and possessions destroyed. Taxpayers opened their hearts and wallets to help New York families get back on their feet.
Twenty-one months later, families are still out of their homes.
But using $40 million or more earmarked for Sandy victims, Governor Andrew Cuomo is airing election-year, feel-good television ads. Cuomo got special dispensation to use the Sandy money for the TV ads from — wait for it — the Washington agency he used to head, The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
These ads feature real Hurricane Sandy families still in need. They are homeless, while Andrew Cuomo uses money meant for them to boost his poll numbers. That story needs to be told.
The powerful ad can be seen below:
Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli (D) has said he would audit the ad spending, which would include the Hurricane Sandy funding as well as the overall $200 million “Open for Business” ad campaign.
We previously reported that CGI Federal, a company which spectacularly fumbled the Obamacare website, was placed in charge of distributing $1.7 billion in Sandy relief. That was $1.7 billion of a massive $60 billion relief package approved by Congress.
$60 billion in relief for Sandy victims, and Governor Cuomo prioritized his feel-good ads above and beyond the well-being of families still homeless after the storm.
Cross-posted at the Mental Recession