NY Assembly Judiciary Committee introduces firm assisting with impeachment investigation

NY Capitol News

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — More is being revealed about the Assembly Judiciary Committee’s impeachment investigation into Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the law firm assisting to lead that effort, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP.

Assembly Judiciary Chair Charles Lavine said, while it’s too early to say what the exact timeline of the investigation will be, he’s expecting it to be months, not weeks. 

“There is very little precedent for impeachment in New York. We are mindful of the due process necessary to ensure the fairness of this process to everyone,” Lavine said. 

An attorney with the firm says they’re committed to doing progress reports on any basis the committee decides and that members of the committee will have access to source materials. He also says there are about half dozen other lawyers on the team, and it will grow as necessary.

Questions about possible conflicts of interest have been raised about the firm as it was reported that the husband of New York State’s Chief Judge worked for the firm. Attorneys with the firm say he retired from the firm in 2012 and has not nor will he play any role in the investigation. Chair Lavine and the firm have concluded that there is no conflict. 

“We have a very robust process within Davis Polk for ensuring that for any assignment that we take on that we do not begin that matter with any conflicts of interest, and so we do a search throughout the firm and through our management committee,” said Angela Burgess, Davis Polk Partner.

Senate Majority Leader Andrea-Stewart Cousins was asked if she had concerns about the firm selected.

“The Assembly is doing the process that they feel they need to do in order to get questions answered and first steps as they said towards the impeachment process, so I don’t really have any comments on their selection or their process,” Stewart-Cousins said.

Chair Lavine has also served the Governor a notice of non-retaliation, and the firm plans to launch a tip hotline.

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