Paterson Seeks Cuomo’s Opinion on Troopergate Documents

Andrew Cuomo’s office just released two letters related to the Troopergate investigation.

The first, dated yesterday, is from Albany County District Attorney David Soares to David Paterson’s office, asking that the governor waive privileges to documents related to Troopergate. (Soares is expected to issue his second report on the effort to smear Joe Bruno later this week.)

Paterson’s office then sent a letter, dated today, to Cuomo’s office asking for a formal opinion on whether the new governor can waive “all privileges” to the documents. (The letter is signed by his chief of staff Charles O’Byrne.)

In the initial investigation into the scandal, Soares and the Republican-led State Senate requested emails and documents from then-Governor Eliot Spitzer relating Troopergate. Reporters also wanted copies of the emails, which some suggested would verify the extent of Spitzer’s involvement.

Spitzer refused to allow the documents to be turned over to the State Senate or reporters, claiming executive privilege.

From Paterson’s letter to Cuomo:

As you will see, the DA’s Office requested that we: (1) waive all privileges applicable to documents that the Executive Chamber provided to the DA’s office relating to its current investigation; and (2) grant a “waiver of Grand Jury secrecy “ under CPL Section 190.50(7) with respect to those documents that we provided pursuant to Grand Jury subpoena.

The letter goes on to ask Cuomo to give a formal advisory opinion on whether Paterson can waive those privileges, and whether Spitzer “has his own right to assert an executive privilege or any other privilege to these documents.”

Soares requested a response from Paterson by 5 p.m.

Paterson Seeks Cuomo’s Opinion on Troopergate Documents