New York Attorney General Letitia James released a report Tuesday concluding that Gov. Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women and retaliated against at least one accuser while violating state and federal laws, The New York Times reports.
James in a 165-page report said that 11 women accused Cuomo of sexual harassment or misconduct, including two previously unreported accusers. One is a female state trooper and the other is an employee at an energy company.
The report said that Cuomo’s team retaliated against one of the women after she made her allegations public.
“Governor Cuomo sexually harassed current and former state employees in violation of both federal and state laws,” James said. “The independent investigation found that Governor Cuomo harassed multiple women, many of whom were young women, by engaging in unwanted groping, kisses, hugging, and by making inappropriate comments.”
James said the investigation found “a deeply disturbing, yet clear picture” and “conduct that corrodes the very fabric and character of our state government and shines light on injustice that can be present at the highest levels of government.”
The findings come amid an impeachment probe by the Democratic-led state legislature and growing calls for Cuomo to resign from members of his own party.
The legislature’s investigation includes sexual harassment allegations as well as other abuses of power by Cuomo.
Joon Kim, a prosecutor hired by James, said that the AG investigation found a “pattern” of behavior among Cuomo’s team that contributed to “conditions that allowed the governor’s sexually harassing conduct to occur and to persist.”
“It was a culture where you could not say no to the governor and if you upset him or his senior staff you would be written off, cast aside or worse,” Kim said. “But at the same time the witnesses described a culture that normalized and overlooked everyday flirtations, physical intimacy and inappropriate comments by the governor.”
Investigators interviewed 179 witnesses and collected tens of thousands of documents.
State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said after the report was released that the chamber would launch “an in-depth examination of the report and its corresponding exhibits.”
“The conduct by the governor outlined in this report would indicate someone who is not fit for office,” he said.
Bipartisan calls to resign:
Lawmakers from both parties called for Cuomo to resign after the report was released.
Rep. Elise Stefanik, the chair of the House Republican Conference, even called for Cuomo to be arrested.
“Governor Cuomo must resign and be arrested immediately. President Joe Biden must immediately call for Cuomo’s resignation,” she said in a statement.
Democratic state Sen. Alessandra Biaggi called for Cuomo to resign or be removed.
“If Cuomo refuses,” she tweeted. “I am calling on @CarlHeastie & the Assembly to move to impeach immediately.”
State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said “the Governor must resign for the good of the state.”