Cuomo apologizes but doesn’t resign following damning report
‘The facts are much different than what has been portrayed.’ – Andrew Cuomo
ALBANY – Gov. Andrew Cuomo was defiant in a response to a damning report that concluded he sexually harassed 11 women and broke state and federal laws.
Attorney General Letitia James released the findings from the report today at 11 a.m. Her office hired independent investigators who worked five months, interviewing 179 people and reviewed 74,000 documents, emails, texts, and pictures as evidence during the investigation.
James and the investigators said the governor engaged in unwanted groping, kissing and hugging, and made inappropriate comments.
Cuomo and his senior staff also took actions to retaliate against at least one former employee for coming forward with her story. The investigators found Cuomo’s Executive Chamber fostered a “toxic” workplace that enabled “harassment to occur and created a hostile work environment.”
But Cuomo said at 1 p.m. today in a prerecorded message that he never inappropriately touched anyone, and his tendency to touch people – men and women – by the face is meant to show warmth. He apologized and said he didn’t “fully appreciate” that his style isn’t viewed as appropriate to some generations and cultures.
The governor insisted politics and bias tainted the report from the attorney general.
“The facts are much different than what has been portrayed,” Cuomo said. “I never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances.”
He urged people to go to his website to see his detailed responses to the allegations.
“Trial by newspaper or biased reviews are not the way to find facts in this matter,” he said.
Cuomo said a “superheated if not toxic political environment” needs to be considered by the public in assessing the report and the investigators’ damning conclusion against him.
“Politics and bias are interwoven throughout every aspect of this situation,” he said. “One would be naive to think otherwise.”
He said his focus will remain on serving as governor
“What matters to me at the end of the day is getting the most done I can for you, and that is what I do every day, and I will not be distracted from that job,” he said.
“We have a lot to do. We still have to manage the Covid beast. It is not dead yet. It’s not over. We then have to reopen and reimagine our state because our future is going to be what we make it.”