New York Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo allegedly summoned an aide to his Executive Mansion last year and reached under her blouse and fondled her.
“The staff member, whose identity is being withheld by the Times Union, had been called to the mansion under the apparent pretext of having her assist the governor with a minor technical issue involving his mobile phone,” The Times Union reported. “They were alone in Cuomo’s private residence on the second floor when he closed the door and allegedly reached under her blouse and began to fondle her, according to the source.”
The reported stated that Cuomo “aggressively grouped” the woman, who was described as “much younger than Cuomo.” The accusation made by the woman surfaced last week as members of Cuomo’s staff watched his first press conference since his misconduct scandal erupted in recent weeks. The woman, who says that she told Cuomo at the time to stop, allegedly became emotional while watching the press conference, and told a female supervisor about “inappropriate encounters with Cuomo.”
Cuomo responded to the latest accusation in a statement:
As I said yesterday, I have never done anything like this. The details of this report are gut-wrenching. I am not going to speak to the specifics of this or any other allegation given the ongoing review, but I am confident in the result of the attorney general’s report.
The newspaper said that Cuomo stated during a press conference on Tuesday that he was “not aware of any other claim” after the newspaper had reached out hours before to ask about the newest accusation.
“As I said last week, this is very simple: I never touched anyone inappropriately,” Cuomo said Tuesday. “I never made any inappropriate advances … (and) no one ever told me at the time that I made them feel uncomfortable. Obviously, there are people who said after the fact they felt uncomfortable.”
Multiple women who have worked for Cuomo have alleged that he sexually harassed them while they worked for him. The most serious allegation involving touching came from Lindsey Boylan, who was the first to make misconduct allegations against Cuomo.
I tried to excuse his behavior. I told myself “it’s only words.” But that changed after a one-on-one briefing with the Governor to update him on economic and infrastructure projects. We were in his New York City office on Third Avenue. As I got up to leave and walk toward an open door, he stepped in front of me and kissed me on the lips. I was in shock, but I kept walking.
I left past the desk of Stephanie Benton. I was scared she had seen the kiss. The idea that someone might think I held my high-ranking position because of the Governor’s “crush” on me was more demeaning than the kiss itself.
Multiple high-ranking Democrats in the state of New York have called on Cuomo to resign in light of the accusations being made against him, which come at approximately the same time as a federal investigation that has been opened into the administration’s handling of nursing homes in the state during the pandemic.
State Attorney General Letitia James’ office is overseeing an investigation into the misconduct allegations that have been made against the governor.
This article has been expanded after publication to include additional information.