Despite mounting outrage over crooked ex-Democratic powerhouse Sheldon Silver being released from prison barely six months into his public corruption sentence, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo had nothing to say about the matter Wednesday.
During his daily briefing from City Hall, de Blasio declined to answer a reporter’s question about the “kind of message” being sent by springing Silver less than nine months into his 6½-year sentence for political corruption.
“I really think we have to put this in the past, let the courts decide that,” the mayor said.
“People who have done things wrong have to suffer the consequences. It’s up to the courts to decide what’s right. I’m comfortable with that.”
In a rare moment of unanimity with his political rival, Cuomo also took a pass when a reporter later asked him to weigh in during a news conference in Manhattan.
“The decision on Sheldon Silver was a judicial decision. I’ll leave it up to them,” the governor said.
De Blasio and Cuomo are both Democrats, as is Silver, the former longtime speaker of the state Assembly, who for decades was one of the three most powerful politicians in the state.
Silver, 77, was sent to the slammer in August, following nearly five years of legal battles over his 2015 arrest for scamming about $4 million in pay-to-play bribes and kickbacks.
On Tuesday afternoon, he returned to his apartment on Manhattan’s Lower East Side in a wheelchair from the federal prison in upstate Otisville.
Silver, who appeared sickly, received a furlough from the US Bureau of Prisons pending a decision on whether he can serve out the rest of his sentence on home confinement.
“He wasn’t super smiley but I’m sure inside he’s thrilled and ecstatic to be out,” friend and supporter Akiva Homnick said.