Gov. Andrew Cuomo held his first press conference since allegations of sexual harassment surfaced last week.
Lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle have called for the Governor to resign. He confirmed during the press conference on Wednesday that it wasn’t happening.
That alone will mean that if lawmakers are convinced that Gov. Cuomo should not hold the highest office in the state- impeachment will be required.
“I never touched anyone appropriately. I never knew, at the time, I was making anyone uncomfortable,” Cuomo said. “I ask the people of this state to wait for the facts from the attorney general’s report before forming an opinion.”
The Governor insisted that he learned a valuable lesson from the entire ordeal. To date, three women have come forward expressing that they were sexually harassed- in one form or another- by Gov. Cuomo.
“I now understand that I acted in a way that made people feel uncomfortable,” he said. “It was unintentional and I truly and deeply apologize for it. I feel awful about it and frankly embarrassed by it and that’s not easy to say but that’s the truth.”
To make matters worse, news broke during the afternoon hours that a key member of the Governor’s COVID-19 task force was leaving his role.
A top Cuomo aide, Gareth Rhodes, leaves COVID task force amid critcal vaccination period; 2 sources say he left in protest, bc of sexual harassment claims against governor by 3 women, 1 who said Cuomo made inappropriate advance at Rhodes' wedding. https://t.co/rfT5bH3Io0
— Michael Gormley (@GormleyAlbany) March 3, 2021
Gareth Rhodes announced on Twitter that he left the task force to return to his state job. Newsday reported that two sources close to him said that he left in protest- upset at the allegations of sexual harassment aimed at Cuomo. One of those sources noted that the third incident actually occurred at his wedding.
Debra Katz, attorney for Charlotte Bennett (ex-Cuomo aide), responds to Cuomo press conference: pic.twitter.com/fZ5EhJqzvs
— Jon Campbell (@JonCampbellNY) March 3, 2021
How can New Yorkers trust you @NYGovCuomo to lead our state if you “don’t know” when you’ve been inappropriate with your own staff?
— Lindsey Boylan (@LindseyBoylan) March 3, 2021
Watch the entire press conference below:
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