Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) now in his third term as New York governor is facing bipartisan pressure to step down as three women in less than a week have come forward accusing him of sexual harassment, with the outcries growing even louder from members of his own party.
NY Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner (D) told Fox News Tuesday evening that the state will, “Require the governor to post information online about executive orders, give local governments the right to issue E.O. without state approval, ease the transition through the end of the disaster period.”
Some Democrats however believe these penalties of removing Cuomo’s emergency powers are merely a slap on the wrist, and the governor should face stricter penalties such as resignation for his actions. NY Assemblyman, Angelo Santabarbara (D), appeared on Fox News Tuesday afternoon, saying that Cuomo’s actions, “distracts from the work that we have to do, I think that for the good of the state, to allow us to move forward, the governor should resign.”
Even national lawmakers are vocally calling for Cuomo to step down. New York Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY) became the first Democrat in saying that Cuomo should resign, tweeting “The time has come.”
The time has come. The Governor must resign. https://t.co/GjcvuNfpfQ
— Kathleen Rice (@RepKathleenRice) March 2, 2021
Democratic Socialists of America — whose most famous member, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) has called for the governor to resign.
“In light of the multiple allegations of sexual harassment by Governor Cuomo, the NYC Chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America is calling for the immediate resignation and impeachment of Governor Andrew Cuomo. We stand with Charlotte Bennet, Lindsey Boylan, and Anna Ruch, who have spoken out about Governor Cuomo’s harassment,” the Democratic Socialists of America group said in a statement issued Tuesday.
AOC hasn’t ruled out calling for Cuomo to resign but emphasized the need for an independent investigation to investigate the governor’s misconduct.
“Lindsey Boylan and Charlotte Bennett’s detailed accounts of sexual harassment by Gov. Cuomo are extremely serious and painful to read,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote on Twitter Sunday. “There must be an independent investigation – not one led by an individual selected by the Governor, but by the office of the Attorney General.”
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also released a statement on Monday where she announced support for an investigation into allegations of sexual assault.
“These stories are difficult to read, and the allegations brought forth raise serious questions that the women who have come forward and all New Yorkers deserve answers too,” Clinton said in the statement breaking her silence. “I’m glad to see that there will be a full, independent, and thorough investigation.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) addressed the scandal Cuomo is facing, calling them “serious and credible,” after the second woman, Charlotte Bennett, accused the governor of sexual harassment on Saturday, saying the incidents occurred during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Pelosi, who remained muted when Cuomo’s first accuser made her claims public finally broke her silence 24 hours later after Bennett came forward, emphasizing now that both accusers should be “heard and to be treated with dignity.”
“The women who have come forward with serious and credible charges against Governor Cuomo deserve to be heard and to be treated with dignity,” Pelosi said in a statement. “The independent investigation must have due process and respect for everyone involved.”
Cuomo has not publicly indicated any intention of stepping down.
— Mona Salama contributed to this article.