Gov. Andrew Cuomo accused of sexual harassment by an ex-aide


I feel like people spent this year trying to romanticize any authority figure with any kind of competence. Which is why Dr. Anthony Fauci became a celebrity, and it’s why New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo enjoyed historic popularity. New York was hit hard early in the pandemic, and Cuomo became the face of the New York pandemic response, with often daily press conferences and daily clapbacks on Donald Trump. But make no mistake – the Cuomos have a streak of Trumpesque bullying and sexism too. Which brings me to this: a former staffer is accusing Cuomo of sexual harassment.

A former aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo accused him of sexual harassment in a series of tweets on Sunday, which his office denies.

Lindsey Boylan, who worked for the Cuomo administration from March 2015 to October 2018 according to the Associated Press, claimed that the governor would often make inappropriate comments about her physical appearance while she worked for him.

“Yes, @NYGovCuomo sexually harassed me for years. Many saw it, and watched. I could never anticipate what to expect: would I be grilled on my work (which was very good) or harassed about my looks. Or would it be both in the same conversation? This was the way for years,” Boylan alleged in a tweet.

“Not knowing what to expect what’s [sic] the most upsetting part aside from knowing that no one would do a damn thing even when they saw it. No one. And I *know* I am not the only woman,” continued Boylan, who served as executive vice president of Empire State Development and then as a special adviser to Cuomo for economic development.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Cuomo’s press secretary, Caitlin Girouard, said: “There is simply no truth to these claims.”

Boylan did not go into detail about the alleged harassment, later tweeting that she has “no interest in talking to journalists” about the matter. “I am about validating the experience of countless women and making sure abuse stops,” she said. “My worst fear is that this continues. And as @FKAtwigs said yesterday, my second worst fear is having to talk about and relive this.” (The singer recently launched a lawsuit against ex-boyfriend Shia LaBeouf, alleging he physically and emotionally abused her.)

[From People]

I believe her. It’s also worth noting that the same time Cuomo was (allegedly) harassing Boylan, he was dating Sandra Lee. Sandra and the governor only broke up in 2019 after being together for some-odd 14 years. Anyway, I believe most of the politicians of those older generations are serial sexual harassers. I remember the stories about Ed Rendell too. Anyway, toxic men are toxic, even when they hold public office.

The governor of the state of New York requisitioned the Javits Center to make it a hospital that will treat the victims of the Coronavirus!

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.

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27 Responses to “Gov. Andrew Cuomo accused of sexual harassment by an ex-aide”

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  1. Emm says:

    Ugh, I know I believe her too and I agree with everything you said about this. It’s just, ugh.

  2. Sayrah says:

    Sexually harassing women and being a male politician of a certain age unsurprisingly other go together. It doesn’t matter which side you’re on.

  3. Naomi says:

    Yes to “trumpesque” — thank you, Kaiser. I live in upstate New York, I am a teacher and work for the state. Sure, Cuomo was “good” in that he actually takes the advice of scientists and did a lot to contain the spread of Covid. But people adore him only because Trump has set the bar so low with his incompetence and lies. Cuomo is a competent governor, but his administration is full of cronies, kickbacks, “boys club” etc.

    I totally believe Boylan; it takes a lot of courage to come out with this, espeically with Cuomo, who wields power with an iron fist.

    Also, speaking as an educator, Cuomo is horrible with funding the public sector, I just strongly dislike him anyway– he hates unions, defunds SUNY, public schools, and hospitals (yes hospitals!!!) and gets in the way of a lot progressive reforms that are meant to help out women and working people.

    • paranormalgirl says:

      He just did MASSIVE cuts to residential programs for the intellectually disabled. He sucks. He was competent in the mid stages of the pandemic, but even a broken clock is right twice a day.

      • Emm says:

        Oh no, F$&@ no. He’s now done in my book. I have a daughter with special needs who could very well need to be in a residential facility one day when my husband and I can’t lift her ourselves anymore because we are too old, or if we, God forbid, pass away before her. Let me tell you, there are not even close to enough good places or people to take care of people like my daughter with the PRIVATE donated money that they get let alone the pittance they get from the government. I’m sick.

      • paranormalgirl says:

        I know. One of my friends works in a day program for adults and her program has to absorb some of the cuts in residential. It’s insane, especially considering who was governor when the Willowbrook expose went down and who helped get quality programs funded for the special needs population… Mario Cuomo. Like him or hate him, Old man Cuomo did a lot for the intellectually disabled population and now his kid is dismantling it. Emm, check out the facebook group NYADD (NY Alliance for Developmental Disabilities) – it’s for parents of special needs kids and adults. They are an advocacy group.

  4. little earthquakes says:

    Not the tiniest bit surprised.

    • Paige says:

      not surprised
      – but also interesting that right after we hear he is on short list for AG , this comes out…The last person on earth that wants Cuomo to be AG is TRUMP….so interesting….Also some shady stuff about her office behavior coming out and the reason she left the job…..

  5. Mouki's wife says:

    Don’t forget about self employed brokers. I was horribly harrassed, sexually and bullied, at my first job as a sales and executive assistant to a senior broker/branch owner, but stayed for years because I was naive and felt too depressed to stand up for myself. And everyone knew but he was signing the paycheques. I quit one day and left with nothing. But I’ve never really had any good bosses…

  6. GuestwithCat says:

    It’s a shame that it’s this way and that we can’t just pick a side and safely assume it’s composed of nothing but good people and heroes. If her accusations are true, I hope she gains some traction on them. This sh** needs to stop.

    I respect this site for honestly and frankly dissecting everything even when it’s painful and doesn’t show “our side” in a good light. I’d like to think our side really just boils down to people doing and promoting what’s right and just. I’m glad there’s no cult of personality tolerated here.

  7. Valerie says:

    One thing that I (as a Canadian) liked about Cuomo was that he would openly challenge Trump, and seemed to be the only one willing to hit him back every time he threw something at them. But I completely believe that he has harassed women.

  8. Rapunzel says:

    I had read Cuomo was on Biden’s list for AG. I think (hopes) this tanks that.

  9. Christina says:

    In these posts, I always like to quote Lundy Bancroft who wrote “Why Does He Do That?”. The book is about domestic violence perpetrators, and it describes how our culture promotes the abuse of women as normal. All of us are conditioned to believe that a man is being “caring” or “romantic” as he tries to overpower a woman’s will “for our own good”. This thinking makes women look the other way when they see someone else being abused; “maybe it was her fault, and he was doing this for her own good”, or “maybe she is lying. We just don’t know.” In LGBTQ relationships, the dominant partner can take this role. I always remember Bancroft describing being stunned that people liked Frankie and Johnny on Broadway. While everyone jumped up and applauded at the end, he and his wife sat there stunned, because they saw a harassing, menacing man trying to overpower a woman’s will, and he was applauded for succeeding in overpowering her will.

    To overpower a woman’s will is normalized. No one paid attention to Lyndsey because her discomfort didn’t matter: only HIS discomfort mattered as the boss/dominator. She worked, but she was made his property because of the power relationship, and men consider women property unconsciously in our society. If we are better than they are at work, they are emasculated and many times retaliate.

    This isn’t just an old man’s problem. The tech guys in Silicon Valley are the same. Thankfully some men resist the idea of dominating women, but many of our world cultures encourage it.

    • Snazzy says:

      Very well said Christina

    • AMA1977 says:

      I’m not surprised. I’m never surprised when this stuff happens, because it’s happened to almost every woman I know in some form or fashion. People think it’s just fine to remark on women’s bodies, choices, facial expressions, attractiveness or lack thereof, and so on and so on. I count myself lucky that I never experienced anything other than the odd grope (always “accidental” in a crowded place) and some situations where I felt unsafe and was lucky to escape without physical harm. The constant deluge of comments about my appearance is small potatoes compared to what some women have dealt with, but it’s still wrong.

      When men finally realize that women are human beings with the same worth, agency, free will, and bodily autonomy as themselves, then we will finally see changes, but there are definitely still many, many men in the world in places of power who seem to view women as less human, less deserving of respect, somehow ornamental or responsible for being “pleasing” according to their definition of the word. It’s systemic and disheartening.

    • Valerie says:

      That’s really interesting about F&J. Similar concerns have been raised about the movie, which toned down the original script, at least from what I’ve read. Johnny still “comes on strong” (as they put it in the movie), but Garry Marshall’s version shows a more willing but still hesitant Frankie. The reasons for her hesitation come out later and aren’t dismissed or downplayed. There’s more of a connection between them, and what you see is Johnny genuinely trying to bring her back out from behind the walls that she has put up around herself.

  10. I pet goat 2 says:

    “I feel like people spent this year trying to romanticize any authority figure with any kind of competence.“

    On point, Kaiser.

  11. ReginaGeorge says:

    She’s also running for Manhattan borough president so this could get interesting

    According to reports, she was forced to resign because she was harassing and belittling fellow female employees while working there. Multiple women went to HR complaining about her behavior. When she changed her mind about resigning, the HR personnel discouraged her because employees were uncomfortable with her. I wonder if any of her coworkers will back her up.

    • cer says:

      And it’s entirely possible for her to have been harassed and for her also to be a horrible person.

      • holly hobby says:

        I would like the witnesses, that she insinuated about, to come out and corroborate her claims. If he talks like that often, there has got to be some people out there who can confirm it. Sorry I’m not going to automatically take her word as gospel – especially since she won’t go into specifics and won’t talk to the press. The timing is all very suspect.

  12. Snazzy says:

    Ugh this makes me so sad. I had the biggest crush on him. I believe her of course, I’m just disappointed.

  13. Faye G says:

    I’m not saying I don’t believe her, it could very well be true. But is there any chance this could be politically motivated, especially with the timing and some reports coming out about her own harassment issues? I don’t know, the whole thing sucks.

  14. Amelie says:

    I easily believe Cuomo has sexually harassed women. He’s known to be a bully to both men and women. And if this woman was one of his victims, she is brave to speak out.

    However the timing is suspect with her political ambitions and her disclaimer “I won’t be speaking to journalists” when she blasted the story on social media for all to see. You can’t have it both ways. You can’t reveal a huge story like that and then say at the same time you won’t answer any questions about it. To use a very extreme example, you don’t accuse someone of murder and then just stand back and say you won’t provide additional info. It doesn’t work like that.

  15. HeatherC says:

    He’s always been a bully. I’ve always thought he was sketchy.

    But that doesn’t take away how he handled the COVID-19 pandemic. No, he wasn’t perfect (ask the nursing homes) but better than most.

    Still doesn’t change he’s a sketchy bully.

    If miraculously Trump had handled the pandemic properly, he still would have been a dumpster fire of a person.

    I hope this kills his AG chances. Don’t forget though, he’s always been a bully and sketchy. What he’s doing to the mentally and developmentally disabled (like Kiddo) will end up being his true legacy, with the sweeping cuts to community homes and services.