Labor bosses and corporate CEOs showed their support for three-term Gov. Andrew Cuomo at a pricey campaign fundraiser Tuesday night despite ongoing investigations over sexual harassment accusations and his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
The minimum $10,000 per head and $15,000 per couple event was held at 75 Rockefeller Plaza, a building managed by the RXR Realty, a firm headed by Cuomo pal Scott Rechler. It attracted more than 170 people, a source familiar with the Cuomo re-election campaign said.
Rechler served as a Cuomo appointee to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.
Related Companies CEO Jeff Blau, whose projects include Hudson Yards, also made an appearance at Cuomo’s first major in-person fundraiser since ending emergency edicts over the coronavirus pandemic.
Equally important for Cuomo was the appearance of some of New York’s most influential labor leaders.
George Gresham, president of the powerful health care workers union — SEIU Local 1199 — introduced Cuomo ahead of his 20 minute speech, a source said.
Other Big Labor attendees included Mario Cilento, president of the NYS AFL-CIO;; Gary LaBarbara, head of the New York Building and Trades Council; SEIU Local 32 BJ president Kyle Bragg; Stuart Appelbaum, head of the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, and Dennis Trainor and Robert Masters of the Communication Workers of America, among others.
Also spotted heading into or leaving the fundraiser were public relations maven Ken Sunshine and lobbyist Charlie King, a longtime Cuomo confidante. King ran as Cuomo’s running mate during his failed 2002 bid for governor and served as executive director of Al Sharpton’s National Action Network.
Other lobbyists and lawyers appeared — including Robert Harding and others associated with Greenberg & Traurig. Harding, whose late father, Ray Harding, once headed the state Liberal Party, served as a deputy mayor for Rudy Giuliani.
City Democratic leaders waved the Cuomo flag: attendees included Brooklyn Democratic Party chairwoman and Assemblywoman Rodneyse Bichotte, Manhattan Democratic leader Keith Wright, Staten Island Democratic leader and Assemblyman Michael Cusick, and Queens Democratic Party executive director Michal Reich.
The support for Cuomo clashes with many elected Democrats who called for Cuomo to resign over the sexual harassment claims — among them US Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.