CVH & VOCAL Respond to Gov Cuomo's Comments about Super PACs

"We need to expel the small army of big money from our governance and from our elections."

NEW YORK, NY (05/02/2012)(readMedia)-- The following joint statement was released today in response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's statements today about Super PACs in New York State, as reported here and here. Sondra Youdelman, Executive Director of Community Voices Heard (CVH), and Sean Barry, Executive Director of Voices of Community Activists and Leaders-NY, released this joint statement.

"Governor Cuomo today said that 'the power of money in the Capitol is unbelievable.' What's unbelievable is his feigned outrage. Governor Cuomo criticizing the role of Super PAC's while seemingly leading the largest one in our state is the height of hypocrisy.

"In fact, community leaders from CVH and VOCAL spoke out about the unbelievable power of money at Governor Cuomo's February 2011 fundraiser at Rockefeller Center's Top of the Rock, but we were escorted out from that posh fundraiser held just six weeks after he took office. We raised the argument in March 2011 when 17 New Yorkers were arrested for civil disobedience, but the message again seemed to fall on deaf ears in the Governor's office.

"For over a year, we have asked for an investigation into the relationship between the Committee to Save NY and the Governor's team, but we have gotten no response since our initial request in February 2011. The public deserves to understand that relationship, which seems to result in multi-million dollar television ads showing majestic images of Niagara Falls and triumphant music, but behind these pretty images is an rgument for ugly cuts to public investments our communities rely on.

"But today it seems we agree with the Governor – the power of money in the Capitol is unbelievable. New York needs to clean house. We need to expel the small army of big money from our governance and from our elections. Mega-millions from the 'Committee to Save New York's 1%' and huge campaign expenditures from the by-the-book Super PACs need to go. We need a government that responds to all New Yorkers and a fair elections system that sees support for non-wealthy candidates is one critical step in that effort."