ALBANY – New York’s anti-corruption commission has issued subpoenas demanding information from Republicans, but the panel established by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has not apparently made such demands of Cuomo’s fellow Democrats in a recent flurry of subpoenas aimed at political organizations, according to an official familiar with the case.
The official told the Associated Press on Thursday that the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption issued subpoenas to the State Senate Republican Campaign Committee and the state Independence Party seeking information on housekeeping accounts, which have few limitations on donations they accept or how they spend the cash.
The official wasn’t authorized to comment on the action and spoke on the condition of anonymity.
State Republican Committee spokesman David Laska initially said he couldn’t comment on what was demanded in “these subpoenas.” But later Thursday he called that a “miscommunication” and said he couldn’t confirm subpoenas were received.
The Independence Party, an influential minor party that works closely with Republicans in the state dominated nearly 2-to-1 by Democratic votes, also confirmed its subpoena but refused to comment further.
The Assembly’s Democratic majority hasn’t received a subpoena, said spokesman Michael Whyland. He said the Assembly Democratic Campaign Committee’s housekeeping follows all the rules as is publicly posted.
A spokesman for the state Democratic Committee, headed by Cuomo, didn’t respond to requests to comment.
Spokesmen for Democratic Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and Democratic Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said they have received no requests for information from the commission.
Commission spokeswoman Michelle Duffy declined to comment.
Friday, Independence Party Chairman Frank MacKay told the AP the party is in full compliance with campaign law.
A week ago, the Legislature refused a request by the commission for information about lawmakers’ outside jobs, which drew a sharp rebuke from the commission, calling the decision “legally indefensible, ethically repugnant.”
The commission isn’t technically authorized to investigate the legislative branch.
But through a novel approach, Cuomo directed the commission to examine campaign records.
The commission is trying to investigate the connection between campaign contributions and the influencing of legislation.