New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is expected to receive approximately $5.1 million from his pandemic book deal amid scrutiny into his coronavirus response and sexual misconduct allegations, The New York Times reports.
Cuomo received $3.12 million last year, according to data released by his office, and his contract calls for him to be paid another $2 million over the net two years.
A spokesperson for Cuomo told the Times that Cuomo netted about $1.5 million last year after expenses and taxes and donated $500,000 of that to the United Way of New York for its vaccination efforts. The remainder was placed in a trust for his three daughters.
Tax records show that Cuomo reported a total of $3.7 million in income last year, including his state salary and investments.
Big paycheck, low sales:
The sum that Cuomo was paid “elicited shock” across the publishing world, especially given that Cuomo’s previous book, a memoir, sold just a few thousand copies.
Though former presidents and first ladies have scored big deals in recent years, Sen. Elizabeth Warren was paid $3.5 million for her book. Sen. Ted Cruz was paid $400,000 for his.
But despite the big investment, sales of the book have been anemic.
The book has sold just 50,000 hardcover copies, not even enough for the publisher to recoup its investment, and the release of a paperback edition has been scrapped.
The cancelation came after mounting scandals surrounding the state’s efforts to cover up the total number of nursing home deaths in the state.
Book project under investigation:
The failing book has also drawn the scrutiny of New York Attorney General Letitia James, who is investigating reports that Cuomo used his aides and state resources to help with the book.
Cuomo has denied that he violated ethics rules barring him from using state resources and said aides that helped with the book did so voluntarily.
James is also investigating sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo from multiple women.