New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigns after report finds sexual misconduct claims credible

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo introduced Tuesday he’s resigning from workplace following a blistering report by the New York legal professional normal that concluded he had sexually harassed a number of girls.

The investigation launched Aug. three left Cuomo more and more remoted even from his personal get together, as prime Democrats together with President Biden referred to as for him to step apart. Cuomo stated his resignation would turn out to be efficient in 14 days.

“One of the best ways I may also help now could be if I step apart and let authorities get again to governing,” Cuomo stated in a video announcement. “And subsequently, that’s what I’ll do.”

He can be succeeded by Kathy Hochul, the Democratic lieutenant governor who will turn out to be New York’s first feminine governor.

Cuomo’s downfall was a outstanding reversal of fortune for a person who’s a part of a political dynasty and who a yr in the past was thought of a probable future White Home contender.

However he had turn out to be a political pariah by the point he declared that he wouldn’t end his third time period as New York governor. Scores of Democratic elected officers had been pressuring him to vacate the workplace even earlier than New York Atty. Gen. Letitia James started an investigation that discovered credible the allegations of 11 girls accusing Cuomo of sexual misconduct.

The accusers’ stories of undesirable advances from the governor, together with groping, kissing and lewd feedback, had been detailed within the 165-page findings of the investigation. A minimum of two accounts had not beforehand been disclosed publicly. One of many girls was a state trooper Cuomo had assigned to his element.

The report additionally discovered that Cuomo had retaliated towards one other of his accusers. It concluded that Cuomo and his workers had violated a number of state and federal legal guidelines and created a poisonous and hostile office.

Cuomo forcefully denied the report’s conclusions and issued an 85-page rebuttal that addressed every declare of sexual misconduct.

“I would like you to know instantly from me that I by no means touched anybody inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances,” he stated in a video launched quickly after James’ findings turned public. “I’m 63 years outdated. I’ve lived my whole grownup life in public view. That’s simply not who I’m, and that’s not who I’ve ever been.”

On Tuesday, Cuomo continued to insist his tactile habits didn’t have any abusive intent however struck a extra contrite tone.

“In my thoughts I’ve by no means crossed the road with anybody, however I didn’t understand the extent to which the road has been redrawn,” he stated.

His suggestion that the investigation was tainted by political bias did little to muffle the drumbeat of Democrats who urged Cuomo to step down. That included Biden, the chief of Cuomo’s get together, who, after listening to of the findings, referred to as on his longtime pal to resign.

Cuomo had already misplaced the assist of many New York Democrats, together with Sens. Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, who had urged the governor to step apart within the spring after a number of girls went public with accusations. The discharge of the investigative report compounded Cuomo’s woes in Albany, the place lawmakers had already initiated an impeachment investigation, after state Meeting Speaker Carl Heastie stated the governor had “misplaced the boldness of the Meeting Democratic majority and … can now not stay in workplace.”

It’s a shocking collapse for Cuomo, the son of the late Mario Cuomo, who served three phrases as governor of New York.

A yr in the past, the youthful Cuomo was nicely into his personal third time period when the pandemic hit. He crammed the void created by the dearth of management from the Trump White Home. New York was arduous hit by COVID-19, however Cuomo’s each day briefings that blended pandemic information, pleas to New Yorkers to take precautions and snapshots of his private life turned must-see-TV for viewers throughout the nation. His recognition drove some Democrats to hope Biden would decide Cuomo as his operating mate.

It additionally constructed on what had been a productive tenure within the governor’s workplace, throughout which Cuomo introduced fiscal self-discipline to the state, helped push by way of the legalization of homosexual marriage and imposed a fracking ban.

However in January, James discovered that the state had undercounted the variety of deaths in nursing houses by 1000’s. Cuomo in the end launched the info, saying he was attempting to keep away from a biased inquiry by the Trump administration. However his critics additionally pointed to his choice final spring to power nursing houses to just accept individuals who had been identified with COVID-19. Cuomo can be going through allegations that he, his household and highly effective backers obtained particular entry to coronavirus testing.

The nursing dwelling controversy touched off Cuomo’s fast descent, which initially echoed a sample acquainted to different governors who rose to prominence and hovering recognition amid a disaster. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, for instance, had appeared politically invincible after steering his state by way of the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. However voters turned on the Republican governor amid a bruising state authorities shutdown later in 2017, when Christie was photographed stress-free along with his household on a seashore amid his orders that each one different state seashores stay closed to the general public.

And the sky-high approval rankings California Gov. Gavin Newsom loved within the early days of the pandemic had been supplanted with widespread public disappointment within the Democrat’s job efficiency because the state botched the distribution of unemployment checks and the vaccine rollout. Now, he faces the specter of recall from workplace.

However Cuomo’s issues would shortly dwarf these of the opposite governors, as accusations surfaced about outrageous and probably legal conduct.

Together with the misconduct allegations got here stories of a poisonous work surroundings in Cuomo’s workplace, through which colleagues had been pitted towards one another, cursing and yelling had been the norm, and younger, skinny, blond girls who wore tight clothes and excessive heels had been routinely employed.

Even earlier than the latest salacious allegations, Cuomo’s tenure was removed from blemish-free. He was generally known as a bully who dominated by way of intimidation. And he‘d survived controversies — notably, ethics investigations that resulted in allies going to jail.

However within the #MeToo period and with few allies keen to remain by his facet after years of his heavy-handed rule, Cuomo’s prior methods had been now not sufficient to avoid wasting him.



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