Thinking back to spring 2020, can you remind us just how expansive Cuomo’s emergency powers were at the beginning of the pandemic?
You know, they were pretty unprecedented. That’s the word that we use a lot, but truly just as the pandemic started to bear down on New York, Cuomo pushed the legislature to pass a whole host of additional powers.
Governors have always had the power to suspend laws during a crisis, but Cuomo allowed it so that he could pass new laws unilaterally. That was not only incredibly unique for him to do, but something that he began to use almost immediately and continued to use even after the worst of the crisis had passed.
State legislators did roll back a lot of those powers back in March of this year. And now we have a new governor, Kathy Hochul. Does she still have any of these emergency powers? What powers does she have when it comes to the pandemic response?
She doesn’t have nearly as many just because Cuomo’s situation was so specific and unique. He knew what he wanted to do and then gave himself the power to do it, it seems.
The powers that Hochul still does have are the ability to suspend certain laws that may be prohibiting faster action.
If she would like to enact new laws through decrees, it’s my understanding that that’s something that she would need to discuss with the legislature.
How has Hochul’s response to the pandemic been different or similar to Cuomo’s?
It’s very interesting because it almost goes without saying that they are two entirely different politicians for many reasons.
Especially because I think Hochul realizes that the way that Cuomo approached the pandemic, and especially in retrospect, some of the things that are coming out now about how that actually played out was the cause of his political downfall, or at least contributed to it.
On one hand, she is going to want to do many things that she can to distinguish herself from him. But also to be fair, we’re in a completely different place than we were a year-and-a-half ago because there are now proven things that Hochul knows are recommended, and she has people that she will lean on to give her those answers.
(this story/news/article has not been edited by PostX News staff and is published from a syndicated feed)