CNN has suspended anchor Chris Cuomo indefinitely after new documents showed the extent of his involvement in his brother’s sexual harassment scandal, according to the network.
Text messages released by the New York Attorney General’s office this week showed Cuomo actively assisting former Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his top aide, Melissa DeRosa, in their efforts to bat back mounting sexual harassment allegations.
At one point, Cuomo in the texts discussed his efforts to get ahead of a report by The New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow detailing allegations against his brother.
He repeatedly urged his brother’s team to “let me help with the prep” and helped write the governor’s statements denying the allegations.
He acknowledged to investigators that he used his “sources” in the media world to assist his brother’s efforts, according to a transcript.
After vowing to review the documents earlier this week, a CNN spokesperson said that the network has suspended Cuomo “indefinitely, pending further evaluation.”
Host Anderson Cooper hosted a second hour on Tuesday in place of Cuomo.
"The New York Attorney General's office released transcripts and exhibits Monday that shed new light on Chris Cuomo's involvement in his brother's defense," a CNN spokesperson. "The documents, which we were not privy to before their public release, raise serious questions."
"When Chris admitted to us that he had offered advice to his brother's staff, he broke our rules and we acknowledged that publicly," the spokesperson continued. "But we also appreciated the unique position he was in and understood his need to put family first and job second."
"However, these documents point to a greater level of involvement in his brother's efforts than we previously knew," the spokesperson added. "As a result, we have suspended Chris indefinitely, pending further evaluation."
Cuomo caused internal turmoil:
The decision to suspend Cuomo came after pressure from “infuriated” CNN employees, including host Jake Tapper, according to The Daily Beast.
Cuomo did not make many friends at the network, a CNN source told the outlet.
“I don’t know anyone who likes him,” the person said.
Another source said they were shocked that CNN boss Jeff Zucker actually decided to punish Cuomo but does not expect any long-term repercussions.