Cuomo donors, real-estate interests fuel Westchester Dems’ anti-Astorino effort

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Some of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s top campaign donors flooded the Westchester County Democratic Committee’s coffers with contributions as it launched an effort to lambaste Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino’s record.

APPhotoRichardDrewLimited liability companies tied to Long Island real-estate developer and charter-flight operator Adam Katz donated a total of $50,000 to the Westchester Democrats in March, while an LLC tied to Manhattan developer The Durst Organization contributed $46,000 in May, according to the committee’s July filing.

The Westchester Democrats launched the “Astorino Truth Squad” earlier this year, which has served to attack Astorino’s record as Westchester County executive, allowing Cuomo to largely stay out of the fray. The committee’s latest campaign-finance disclosure was filed late Monday or early Tuesday, a week after it was due and shortly after Westchester Democratic Chairman Reginald LaFayette brusquely brushed off questions about why it was late.

Both Katz and The Durst Organization are major donors to Cuomo’s re-election campaign. Katz and his LLCs have donated more than $202,000 to Cuomo’s campaign coffers since 2011, according to the New York Public Interest Research Group, making him Cuomo’s sixth-largest donor of the election cycle.

The Durst Organization and its holdings have donated $87,500 to Cuomo over the last four years, according to NYPIRG.

Overall, the Westchester Democrats took in $293,278 since mid-January — more than it raised in the previous 18 months, according to campaign-finance filings. It spent $157,226 over the same time period.

The committee’s expenditures show more ties to Cuomo and the state Democratic Committee, which is controlled by Cuomo. The Westchester Democrats sent $40,500 in April to 80/20 Consulting, a New York City firm that has helped produce television advertisements for both Cuomo and the state Democrats.

The main consultant behind the Truth Squad effort — Michael Morey, a former aide to Sen. Charles Schumer — received $27,000 from the Westchester Democrats since January, according to the latest filing.

(AP file photo/Richard Drew)

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  1. Funny Business on

    To Gov. Cuomo, although I am not happy about how you handled some issues it might be time for you to appoint others to dig in and investigate what is really going on down in Westchester County. Obviously Larry Schwarts and those others you are counting on are not capable or are just not telling you everything. If a full investigation were to take place the corruption involving Astorino, the Republican party and the Conservative party members there you would not finish to derail Astorino’s campaign for Gov. the findings would also bring about his removal from the County Exec. position before the end of the year. It might also put some people in jail. Then again maybe you already know but typical politics instead of doing the right thing the Dems. and Republicans are just going to make trades and the people get the short end of the stick!!!!!