Facing an investigation of six sexual harassment and misconduct claims plus a probe of his administration’s cover-up of nursing home death data amid the COVID-19 pandemic, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) days as a darling are over. Cuomo, who has defiantly said “there’s no way I resign,” suggested during a phone call with the press on Friday that allegations against him are politically motivated.
The phone call with the press came the day after New York state lawmakers within his own party announced that they were opening an impeachment investigation. It also happened on the day more than 10 New York congressional Democrats publicly demanded Cuomo’s resignation. Cuomo suggested those lawmakers were cancelling him.
People know the difference between “playing politics, bowing to cancel culture, and the truth,” he said—twice.
Cuomo has not denied that he made women uncomfortable with his behavior in the workplace. Instead, he apologized for what he said was a misunderstanding of his intent and apologized if he had caused anyone pain. On Wednesday, March 10, the Times Union reported a sixth allegation against the governor. The woman, described as an aide, made an allegation that Cuomo had acted in a sexually predatory way—groping her in a sexually charged manner after summoning her to the governor’s mansion under the pretense of needing help with his phone.
In the wake of that reporting, the Wall Street Journal reported that Cuomo aides had in recent months worked to discredit Lindsey Boylan, the first former Cuomo aide who alleged in Dec. 2020 that the governor had sexually harassed her. Since then, former Cuomo aides Charlotte Bennett, Ana Liss, Karen Hinton also came forward and alleged inappropriate behavior. Anna Ruch, who is not a former Cuomo aide, also accused Cuomo of making an unwanted advance at a wedding.
Regarding the latest and most serious allegation of groping, Cuomo said, “I did not do what has been alleged. Period.”
“I won’t speculate about people’s possible motives, but I can tell you as a former attorney general who’s gone through this situation many times, there are often many motivations for making an allegation, and that is why you need to know the facts before you make a decision,” he said.
“No one wants them to have more quickly and more thoroughly than I do,” Cuomo added. “Let them do it. I’m not going to argue this issue in the press; that is not how it is done. That is not the way it should be done. Serious allegations should be weighed seriously, right? That is why they are called serious.”
He said politicians who don’t know a “single fact” but who form a conclusion are “reckless” and dangerous.
“That, my friends, is politics at its worst,” Cuomo said.
Later on, Cuomo said, “Is it possible that I have taken a picture with a person who after the fact says they were uncomfortable with the pose in the picture? Yes. And, that’s what you’re hearing about.”
“The last allegation” of inappropriate touching “is just not true,” he said.
[Image via AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool]
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