The sexual harassment scandal engulfing Gov. Andrew Cuomo escalated Wednesday with the emergence of allegations that he reached under a female aide’s blouse and groped her while they were alone in a room inside the Executive Mansion in Albany.
The incident allegedly unfolded after the much-younger woman was summoned to help the 63-year-old governor fix a problem with his cellphone, the Albany Times Union reported.
The woman told him to stop, the newspaper said.
The accusations are the most serious yet made against Cuomo, who’s previously been hit with claims of sexual harassment and other inappropriate behavior by five other women, four of whom were his aides at the time.
The latest accuser said the incident took place late last year after Cuomo shut the door to a room on the second floor of the governor’s heavily guarded, official residence, the Times Union said.
More details from the Times Union article:
The woman's story was revealed within the governor's Executive Chamber on March 3, as staff members watched his first news conference in the week since Lindsey Boylan published an online essay detailing her own allegations against Cuomo. In the news conference, the governor denied ever touching any women "inappropriately."
Hearing those remarks, the female aide became emotional. At least one female supervisor came to her assistance and asked why she was upset. The female aide subsequently told the supervisor about what she said had been inappropriate encounters with Cuomo, the source said.
The Cuomo defense:
In response to the Times Union's questions about the allegations, Cuomo on Wednesday evening issued a statement to the newspaper: "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.”
That's six accusers now. Add in the horrific nursing home scandal and I don't see how Cuomo survives or why anyone would want him to.
Some reaction to the groping allegation:
Assemblyman Ron Kim (D-Queens) — who last month called for Cuomo’s impeachment for the cover-up of the death toll of nursing home residents from COVID-19 — said, “I am without words. This is now sexual assault.”
Assemblywoman Yuh-Line Nioh (D-Manhattan) tweeted, “I feel sick.”
Update, March 11
BREAKING: @CarlHeastie, leader of @NYSA_Majority, confirms:
"I am authorizing the Assembly Judiciary Committee to begin an impeachment investigation, led by Chair Charles D. Lavine, to examine allegations of misconduct against Governor Cuomo."