NEW YORK — Mayor Invoice de Blasio recommended Monday that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo must step down if an investigation into sexual harassment allegations by two former aides corroborates the accusations.
A second aide to the governor, Charlotte Bennett, told The New York Times Cuomo requested her inappropriate questions on her intercourse life, together with “if I had ever been with an older man.” That got here on the heels of former staffer Lindsey Boylan alleging final week that Cuomo kissed her with out her consent and made inappropriate feedback, together with asking her to play strip poker.
De Blasio stated an older man making an attempt to make the most of a youthful girl to make her really feel like she might lose her job if she doesn’t consent is “horrible” — and recommended Cuomo should step down if he’s discovered to have engaged in sexual harassment.
“If somebody purposely tried to make use of their energy to pressure a lady to have intercourse with them, in fact that’s somebody who should not be in public service,” de Blasio stated throughout his every day press briefing.
The mayor has known as for the instant cancellation of Cuomo’s emergency powers in addition to two separate independent investigations into his conduct.
Cuomo launched a press release Sunday wherein he claimed his feedback had been meant to be “good natured” and stated he was sorry the interactions had been “misinterpreted as an undesirable flirtation.” He additionally conceded he typically makes “jokes that I believe are humorous” when he’s at work, believing he’s “being playful.”
The governor agreed on Sunday to permit state Lawyer Basic Tish James to nominate a “certified personal lawyer” to launch an investigation into the allegations towards him, reversing course after James rejected his earlier proposals and demanded subpoena energy.
“This isn’t a duty we take frivolously,” James stated in a press release. “We are going to rent a legislation agency, deputize them as attorneys of our workplace, and oversee a rigorous and impartial investigation.”
De Blasio known as Cuomo’s conduct “disgusting” and “creepy” and stated he has seen the governor be abusive “in a manner that might not be accepted by anybody in management.”
“Sexual harassment is just not humorous,” he stated on Scorching 97 earlier Monday morning. “I imply, who the hell tries to clarify that by saying I used to be simply joking round? I imply that even additional confirms a mindset from an entire ‘nother time that we’ve left behind, that is unacceptable.”
Federal investigators are additionally wanting into the Cuomo administration’s dealing with of Covid-19 deaths in nursing houses. For months, the state hid knowledge on hundreds of nursing dwelling sufferers who died of Covid-19.
De Blasio stated, along with the sexual harassment allegations, there should be a probe into the nursing houses, together with whether or not Cuomo acquired marketing campaign contributions from the nursing dwelling business.
“We can not simply take a look at one or the opposite,” he stated. “We’d like a full investigation of the nursing dwelling situation the place hundreds of individuals died. Info was lined up on objective and we nonetheless do not know if our seniors are protected going ahead, our elders. We do not know if they are, as a result of we’ve not gotten a full accounting of the info.”