Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Press Secretary Josh Vlasto interrupted his vacation so he could appear on the radio show of Cuomo apologist/New York Post state capitol bureau chief Fred Dicker to explain that a “file” kept by Cuomo’s flack on a reporter who’s often critical of the governor wasn’t as Nixonian as members of the media were making it out to be.
The “file” (although, Cuomo’s office disputes that the document is in fact a “file”) on Albany reporter Elizabeth Benjamin was provided to Buzzfeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith by a “political operative.”
We’ve seen it, and Vlasto has a point — it’s just a collection of blog posts, some of which Cuomo’s Communications Director Richard Bamberger deemed “generally snarky.”
However, the fact that the “file” even exists, as Smith points out, is indicative of the paranoia Cuomo’s office has with how the gov is perceived in the media, which is why people like Dicker (and maybe only Dicker) — who don’t have a bad thing to say about Cuomo — have total access to the governor, while the rest of us can seldom get even a response from the second floor. Cuomo’s picking and choosing which members of the fourth estate he considers friendly enough to speak with might also have something to do with his current 70-percent approval rating.
We want to know what you think, though: is Cuomo’s office’s “file” on a “snarky” reporter as insignificant as Vlasto and Bamberg want us to think it is?
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 17, 2012