Seasons Greetings
    

Flash News: US and China deploy aircraft carriers in South China Sea as Philippines prepares for joint exercises     - | -     The Nurvv Run smart insoles made me a better runner      - | -     White Lives Matter rally in Huntington Beach turns Violent     - | -     BLM protesters gather after Minnesota cop fatally shoots driver during traffic stop     - | -     Loyalty or loyal opposition? Democrats test fealty to Biden in special elections     - | -     White House knew more than a week ago of Johnson & Johnson contractor vaccine-supply problems     - | -     'Horrific massacre': Suspect locked entries, knew victims in deadly shooting at California office building, police say     - | -     Four people, including child, killed in Orange, California, shooting     - | -     New York passes bill to legalize marijuana for recreational use     - | -     Maryland votes to nix state song, a Confederate call to arms     - | -     Kim Janey rewrites history, Boston's first Black and female mayor     - | -     Gunman kills 10 at Colorado supermarket in second US mass shooting in a week     - | -     Kamala Harris laughs when asked if she will visit the border raises sharp criticism online     - | -     Roger Stone under fresh scrutiny as Capitol attack investigation intensifies     - | -     Vaccines will likely not be mandatory for teachers: Biden’s Education Secretary     - | -     Fauci warns about potential for an oncoming resurgence of virus if restrictions eased     - | -     Biden plug relief to Americans, celebrates 'transformational' victory on COVID-19 relief     - | -     LA Schools to Reopen in mid-April & NY City will open high schools next week     - | -     Women are tired of explaining to men like Andrew Cuomo why sexual harassment is wrong     - | -     Biden signs orders on gender equity, nominates two women to be four-star commanders     - | -     Nation takes baby steps to normality after year in lockdown; "The virus isn't going to go away," says Harvard epidemiologist     - | -     Rumours of vaccine site giving jabs to anyone because of low demand. Hundreds lined up     - | -     Vaccine supply will "dramatically" increase in weeks ahead: Fauci     - | -     Biden calls it "Neanderthal thinking" slams Texas and Mississippi's decisions to lift COVID-19 mask mandates     - | -     This Is What GOP Feared. Now that Trump Has Governed with Executive Orders, Dems Plan to Do Same      - | -     Man Throwing 'Incendiary Devices' at ICE Detention Center Is Killed in Attack      - | -     Mueller Hearing Pushed Back a Week to Allow More Time for Him to Answer Questions      - | -     Trump Tells 4 Congresswomen of Color to 'Go Back' to 'Crime-Infested' Countries They Came From      - | -     GOP Congressman Invokes 'The Deep State'

Local News

Andrew Cuomo acknowledges his workplace comments

viewsViews 594

Andrew Cuomo acknowledges his workplace comments

2021-03-01 04:57:04

By Dwaipayan

 

Faced with an escalating backlash following two allegations of sexual harassment in less than a week, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday acknowledged that some of his comments in the workplace "may have been insensitive or too personal" and said he was "truly sorry" to those who might have "misinterpreted (the remarks) as an unwanted flirtation."

But Cuomo, a third-term Democrat, also maintained that he never inappropriately touched or propositioned anyone, denying the allegation of a former aide that he had kissed her on the lips after a one-on-one briefing.

The governor's statement capped a whirlwind 24 hours that began with a new accusation on Saturday of sexual harassment and growing calls from prominent New York Democrats for an independent investigation into the allegations. His efforts to guide that process also unraveled after the state attorney general, Letitia James, rejected Cuomo's proposal that she and the New York's chief judge jointly select an independent attorney to conduct "a thorough and independent review" of the claims against him. Instead, James insisted that the process be free from any perception of interference by the governor or his allies. To do that, she said, her office requested an official referral that would provide the investigation -- which will be handled by an outside law firm -- subpoena power.

In backing down from his initial positions, Cuomo who over a decade in office has kept a powerful grip on the workings of the state government signaled an understanding of the severity of a scandal that could threaten his job and prospects for reelection next year to a fourth term.

Cuomo's office had initially selected former federal Judge Barbara Jones to investigate claims of sexual harassment made against the governor by two female former aides, but the choice was publicly rejected by several high-profile New York Democrats, who argued that Cuomo should have no role in shaping the probe.

Beth Garvey, special counsel and senior adviser to the governor, in a statement earlier Sunday then asked James and Chief Judge Janet DiFiore to choose "an independent and qualified lawyer in private practice without political affiliation" to conduct a "thorough review" and issue a report on the matter in an effort to "avoid even the perception of a lack of independence or inference of politics."

But that push, too, was rejected by James, who in a pair of statements of her own made clear the conditions under which her office could conduct an independent probe. Early on Sunday afternoon, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand backed James.

"These allegations are serious and deeply concerning. As requested by Attorney General James, the matter should be referred to her office so that she can conduct a transparent, independent and thorough investigation with subpoena power," Gillibrand said in a press release.

The claims against Cuomo that will be investigated include one that emerged Saturday evening in an article in The New York Times. Charlotte Bennett, a 25-year-old former executive assistant and health policy adviser to Cuomo, told the newspaper that during one of several uncomfortable encounters, Cuomo asked her questions about her sex life during a conversation in his State Capitol office and said he was open to relationships with women in their 20s.

She interpreted the exchange which she said took place in June while the state was in the throes of fighting the pandemic as what the newspaper called "clear overtures to a sexual relationship.

"The last thing I would ever have wanted was to make her feel any of the things that are being reported," Cuomo said, saying that "she came to me and opened up about being a sexual assault survivor" and that "I tried to be supportive and helpful."

A separate allegation was made by Lindsey Boylan, another former Cuomo aide, who wrote a detailed post on Medium last week about her own claims of sexual harassment against Cuomo, which his aides have said are untrue.

Boylan alleged in the Medium post that Cuomo invited her to "play strip poker" during a 2017 flight on his taxpayer-funded jet while another aide was seated beside her and a state trooper behind her. In 2018, Boylan said, Cuomo stunned her by kissing her on the lips after a one-on-one briefing on economic and infrastructure projects in his New York City office. Cuomo denied Boylan's allegations in a December news conference when she first made them.

In a statement released by the governor's press secretary on Wednesday, four other people said they were on October flights with her and that "this conversation did not happen."

Among the Democrats who called on Cuomo to let the attorney general and chief judge appoint an independent investigator is New York Rep. Jerry Nadler, who wrote in a tweet on Saturday: "As has become standard practice in the State of New York when allegations relate directly to the Executive, Governor Cuomo should refer the matter to the Attorney General, who should, in turn, appoint an independent investigator."

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez similarly wrote on Twitter on Sunday that there "must be an independent investigation - not one led by an individual selected by the Governor" to look into the allegations, which she called "extremely serious and painful to read."

 

 

Post Your Comment




Most Recent News

UEFA Champions League: Liverpool v Real Madrid Quarterfinal Second Leg Preview

14 April, 2021

  Liverpool v Real Madrid - quarter-final second leg preview  ...More

Soccer: PSG 0-1 Bayern; Parisiens Through on Away Goals After Dramatic Second Leg

14 April, 2021

  PSG 0-1 Bayern - Parisiens through on away goals after dramatic second leg  ...More

Sports Biz: Cisco Becomes an Official Technology Partner of the National Football League

14 April, 2021

  -Posted by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Baltimore Ravens quarterback rushes against the Dallas Cowboys. (Image Source: Tim Nwachukwu / Getty Images) AN JOSE, Calif. — The......More

Get Published

Want to publish your own articles?

Create an account, and submit your articles, photos and/or videos. They will be reviewed by our professional copy editors, and if it is approved, it will be published for all our readers to view.

 
 

MORE FOR YOU