Human Rights Campaign Leader Caught Up in Cuomo Scandal



But of course …

Captain Renault: I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!

2 Comments for “Human Rights Campaign Leader Caught Up in Cuomo Scandal”

  1. posted by Jorge on

    If I understand the issue correctly (New York Post, some disreputable internet rag, and the NY
    AG office’s report itself), this is a complete non-issue. At worst it is guilt by association (and perhaps a dose of incompetence) masquerading as an accusation of retaliation. Of course, where Governor Cuomo is concerned, guilt by association is a charge one should take seriously.

    1) Mr. HRC leader David had an HR or personnel role and had a conference with Ms. Boylan due to an incident of employee misconduct. Ms. Boylan voluntarily resigned in place of disciplinary action. The conference and accompanying written material explicitly stated she was not being fired or asked to resign. She did in fact resign. The actual nature and voluntariness of Ms. Boylan’s departure from her employment were later either seriously misrepresented or seriously misunderstood by other members of the Executive Chamber as her being fired rather than as a resignation, which misrepresentation was leaked to the media. Mr. David testified that when Ms. Boylan inquired later about returning to the job, he explained that would be complicated because it would immediately require taking corrective action against her related to her misconduct.

    2) Mr. David had limits to his experience and polish in the area of documenting personnel disciplinary records. This is apparent by Mr. David keeping a copy of the record even after his departure from state government, his explanation for keeping a copy–that this was the only employee he had ever had such a conference with–and the great difficulty he and others have had in agreeing on how to label the gray area of Ms. Boylan’s departure. In my opinion, these limits are understandable in a relatively small government department that does not hire civil servants for personnel matters (perhaps, though, it should).

    3) I can think of no reason why Mr. David was entitled to retain any copies of his record of conferences with Ms. Boylan. I fully agree with his defense to the HRC membership that he had an obligation to turn them over upon request to either his successor or his successor’s boss. He in fact turned them over to the Governor’s Chief of Staff, Melissa DeRosa, i.e., his successor’s boss. I find absolutely no justification whatsoever to the Los Angeles Blade’s accusation that he assisted in efforts to leak the file in the media, much less that his surrender of a record he was not entitled to have in the first place was in any way motivated by an intent or conspiracy to discredit Ms. Boylan.

    then assisted in efforts to leak that file to the media in an attempt to discredit her.

    4) I am not convinced that Mr. David’s role as part of the furtive op-ed responding to Ms. Boylan’s accusations is damning, or even very significant. The Washington Post Article linked to claims Mr. David suggested changes to a scrapped op-ed against Ms. Boylan, and attempted to gather signatures for it. The only participation in creating the draft I can find attributable to Mr. David is, “Ms. DeRosa sent the draft to Mr. David [and others]”, and “The others whom Ms. DeRosa consulted agreed that the letter was an overreaction.” I did not catch the part where he refused to sign but agreed to help circulate the draft until this, my fourth return to the report.

    Hardly the stuff of scandal or coverup.

    5) The only thing I think Mr. David did do wrong was have his name come up on conversations around recording another Executive Chamber employee. To be perfectly honest, I’m not convinced this is true. Compared to almost all the other actors involved, Mr. David comes across like a bit of a blob. He’s name-dropped constantly, but it’s almost impossible to tell what he was doing or thinking. I think it is far more likely he was simply in the room during every single conversation, when when the subject did not involve him.

    6) All in all, this story suffers from a great deal of hypocrisy and witchhunt mentality. There are very few stories that suggest or make it clear what he should have done differently. Keep records he was not entitled to? Not an option. Sit out on meetings within an employer he was no longer working with and demand they take a deposition of him instead? Take better notes on the job? Stay far, far away from the honey-tongued viper that is Andrew Cuomo and work for the honey-tongued viper that is the Human Rights Campaign instead?

    • posted by agee on

      Why would he take _personnel_ files from his former job with Cuomo with him after he left? And then release the information in the files when Cuomo found it useful to do so?

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