ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Original York Gov. Andrew Cuomo acknowledged for the major time Sunday that about a of his behavior with females “would possibly maybe well well even occupy been insensitive or too deepest,” and said he would cooperate with a sexual harassment investigation led by the state’s attorney regular.
In a statement launched amid mounting criticism from inner his possess birthday party, the Democrat maintained he had never inappropriately touched or propositioned someone. But he said he had teased other folks about their deepest lives in an are trying to be “roguish.”
“I now sign that my interactions would possibly maybe well well even occupy been insensitive or too deepest and that about a of my comments, given my space, made others surely feel in ways I never intended. I acknowledge about a of the things I even occupy said occupy been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation. To the extent someone felt that scheme, I’m surely sorry about that,” he said.
Cuomo, one of The United States’s most properly-known governors, is dealing with the most serious dispute of his decade barely than job following claims he sexually pressured not not up to two females who worked for him. Democrats in Original York and all the scheme in which thru the nation aren’t rallying to his aspect, leaving him increasingly isolated from dilapidated allies.
His partial admission of wrongdoing came after a day of wrangling over who must investigate his office behavior.
By day’s pause, Cuomo acquiesced to calls for that Attorney Ordinary Letitia James retain a watch on the inquiry.
James said she expected to obtain a formal referral that would possibly maybe well well give her space of job subpoena vitality and enable her to deputize an exterior law firm for “a rigorous and autonomous investigation.”
“Right here’s not a accountability we desire frivolously,” said James, a Democrat who has been, at occasions, allied with Cuomo however is independently elected and had emerged as a consensus resolution to lead a probe.
Calls for an investigation mounted after a second used employee of Cuomo’s administration went public Saturday with harassment claims.
Charlotte Bennett, a low-level aide within the governor’s administration except November, told The Original York Times Cuomo asked questions about her sex existence, together with whether or not she ever had sex with older males, and made varied comments she interpreted as gauging her hobby in an affair.
Her accusation came days after one other used aide, Lindsey Boylan, a used economic pattern adviser, elaborated on harassment allegations she first made in December. Boylan said Cuomo subjected her to an unwanted kiss and comments about her look.
Cuomo, 63, said he had intended to be a mentor for Bennett, who’s 25. He has denied Boylan’s allegations.
Over several hours Sunday, James and varied leading birthday party officers rejected two of Cuomo’s proposals for how an investigation would possibly maybe well well proceed.
Below his first thought, a retired federal pick picked by Cuomo, Barbara Jones, would occupy reviewed his office behavior. In the second proposal, introduced Sunday morning in an are trying to appease legislative leaders, Cuomo asked James and the state’s chief appeals court pick, Janet DiFiore, to collectively appoint a attorney to investigate and dispute a public listing.
James rejected each plans, aggravating a formal referral giving her space of job authority to subpoena documents and gape testimony.
Loads of the top names in Original York politics lined up on the assist of James.
Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, each Democrats, said they wished the attorney regular to take care of the investigation. Republican leaders had, for days, known as on James to launch a probe. On Sunday, Republican state Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt known as on Cuomo to resign.
Original York’s two U.S. senators, Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, each said an autonomous investigation changed into once essential.
“These allegations are serious and deeply pertaining to. As requested by Attorney Ordinary James, the topic must be referred to her space of job so that she will be able to conduct a clear, autonomous and thorough investigation with subpoena vitality,” Gillibrand said.
Cuomo’s statement that females had misinterpreted comments that occupy been intended to be jokes changed into once met with outrage from any other folks, who said he looked to be blaming the females.
“Is it ‘roguish’ to touch one’s staff’ legs & kiss them on the lips towards their will? Bc better males than A Cuomo occupy been fired for that,” tweeted used Fox Recordsdata and NBC journalist Megyn Kelly, whose sexual harassment allegations towards behind Fox Recordsdata Chairman Roger Ailes helped lead to his ouster.
White Dwelling press secretary Jen Psaki said President Joe Biden furthermore supported an autonomous review that “must lag forward as mercurial as doubtless.”
The furor comes amid a brand new round of criticism over Cuomo’s management style and actions his administration took to offer protection to his recognition as a leader within the coronavirus pandemic.
Cuomo obtained reward as a right hand within the direction of final spring’s disaster of rising case counts and overflowing morgues. His book, “American Disaster: Management Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic,” changed into once published in October.
But in recent weeks his administration changed into once compelled to revise its depend of COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes following criticism that it had undercounted the fatalities to blunt accusations that about a of his administration’s policies had made the difficulty worse.
James fueled about a of that criticism by issuing a listing announcing the Cuomo administration had undercounted deaths.
Now, his toughen is eroding sooner.
“Lindsey Boylan and Charlotte Bennett’s detailed accounts of sexual harassment by Gov. Cuomo are extraordinarily serious and painful to read,” U.S. Earn. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said on Twitter Sunday. “There ought to be an autonomous investigation — not one led by an person chosen by the Governor, however by the gap of job of the Attorney Ordinary.”
Matthews reported from Original York Metropolis.