New York Mayor Leads Call For Cuomo Ouster After Probe Says Governor Acted Inappropriately
19:31 GMT 03.08.2021 (Updated: 13:21 GMT 06.08.2022)
NEW YORK (Sputnik) - Nearly all of New York’s congressional delegation has broken ranks with Governor Andrew Cuomo after a state investigation concluded on Tuesday that he sexually harassed multiple women, with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio leading calls for the resignation of the governor.
“My first thoughts are with the women who were subject to this abhorrent behavior, and their bravery in stepping forward to share their stories,” the New York mayor said in a statement. “The Attorney General’s detailed and thorough report substantiates many disturbing instances of severe misconduct. Andrew Cuomo committed sexual assault and sexual harassment, and intimidated a whistleblower. It is disqualifying.”
"It is beyond clear that Andrew Cuomo is not fit to hold office and can no longer serve as Governor," said de Blasio who has not ruled out running for the governor's job when his own current term as mayor ends. "He must resign, and if he continues to resist and attack the investigators who did their jobs, he should be impeached immediately."
Earlier on Tuesday, New York State Attorney General Letitia James said a months-long probe sanctioned by her office concluded that Cuomo harassed multiple women
, many of them his younger colleagues, breaking state as well as US federal laws. She said Cuomo and some of his senior aides also attempted to silence complainants by making it difficult for them to continue their work for the state.
Cuomo also lost the support of a majority of lawmakers in his Democrat party in the state legislature, including New York’s two US senators Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand.
“Due to the multiple, credible sexual harassment and misconduct allegations, it is clear that Governor Cuomo has lost the confidence of his governing partners and the people of New York,” the Democratic senators wrote in a joint statement. “Governor Cuomo should resign.”
Cuomo’s investigators, who took up complaints by 11 women, say they interviewed 179 people and reviewed 74,000 pieces of evidence that included documents, emails, texts, audio files and pictures.
Cuomo, in an immediate reaction, denied he had harassed any of the complainants, saying the probe had “weaponized everyday interactions” of his and “unfairly characterized” him.
"I never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances,” the governor said in a live stream carried on Twitter.
The probe against Cuomo was a civil investigation and it is not known whether any criminal charges will eventually be pressed against the governor.
At the age of 63, Cuomo has been in office for three consecutive terms since 2011.