Andrew Cuomo, the governor of New York, is facing calls to resign as investigations are underway regarding accusations against him of sexual harassment and sexual assault.
Mr Cuomo has so far refused to resign from office and denies any wrongdoing.
Six women have come forward with highly detailed accounts of their alleged interactions with the governor and there is a report of an accusation by one unnamed individual.
Here are all the sexual harassment allegations against Mr Cuomo.
The first accusation against the governor came in December 2020, when Lindsey Boylan, a former aide, and state economic development official, accused him of sexual harassment and creating a toxic environment. In early March 2021, Ms Boylan further stated that Mr Cuomo had forcibly kissed her in 2018 and suggested that she and others play strip poker on a plane with him. Mr Cuomo says the stories are false.
In late February 2021, Charlotte Bennett, an executive assistant and health policy advisor to the governor, accused Mr Cuomo of sexual harassment, including asking her questions about her sex life. She told CBS Evening News that during a one-on-one meeting in the governor’s office on 5 June 2020, Mr Cuomo said that he was open to dating women her age and that he was lonely. She complained and was moved to another department. Ms Bennett also said that Mr Cuomo’s office director took the state’s mandatory sexual harassment training for him.
Anna Ruch became the third accuser in early March. Ms Ruch, a member of the Obama administration who later served on Joe Biden’s presidential campaign did not work for the governor. She said that Mr Cuomo put his hands on her back, was rebutted when she removed them, and then placed his hands on her face cheeks and asked to kiss her. She turned away. The incident took place at a wedding immediately after they had met and was photographed by a friend.
Ana Liss, a policy and operations aide to Mr Cuomo from 2013 to 2015, became the third former aide and fourth woman to accuse the governor of sexual harassment. Ms Liss said Mr Cuomo once kissed her hand at her desk and greeted her at a reception where she was working with “Hey, sweetheart,” a hug, and a kiss on both cheeks. The governor then put his arm around her lower back and waist as they posed for photo, Ms Liss said. She eventually asked for a job transfer. In an interview, Ms Liss said she was “not claiming sexual harassment per se,” but felt the administration “wasn’t a safe space for young women to work.”
Karen Hinton, a former press aide for Mr Cuomo when he served as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development in the Clinton administration, also accused him of sexual harassment. She said that Mr Cuomo called her into a hotel room and then pulled her back toward his body in an overly long hug while on a work trip. The governor says her account is “not true”.
Jessica Bakeman, a former member of the Capitol press corps in Albany who worked for Politico became the most recent accuser when on 12 March. She wrote an account of a 2014 event in which the New York governor but his hands on her waist, arms around her back, and never let go of her hand as they posed for photos. He then asked: “I sorry. Am I making you uncomfortable? I thought we were going steady.” Ms Bakeman said she was stunned into silence and felt shocked and humiliated. “I never thought the governor wanted to have sex with me,” Ms Bakeman wrote. “It wasn’t about sex. It was about power.”
A further member of staff has alleged that Mr Cuomo touched her without her consent after summoning her to the governor’s mansion in Albany to help him with some work, according to theTimes Union of Albany, which didn’t name the woman or provide further details. Some of the woman’s colleagues told the governor’s lawyer about the allegations in recent days, according to the newspaper.
With additional reporting from The Associated Press.
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