NY Attorney General: Gov. Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed eleven women

NY Governor Cuomo Presser

Gov. Andrew Cuomo made a name for himself nationally during the pandemic by giving daily press conferences which ended up being kind of soothing to a national audience. There was even some gossip about Cuomo maybe being on the short list for Biden’s VP. But nothing came of it, because there were persistent rumors about Cuomo and his bullying, harassing behavior towards women. Those rumors became mainstream news when several women began speaking out about Gov. Cuomo’s inappropriate touching, inappropriate comments and a lot more. The state Attorney General Letitia James was tasked with investigating Cuomo and her office found that he is officially a serial sexual harasser:

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo sexually harassed current and former state employees, creating a hostile work environment for women in violation of state and federal law, state Attorney General Letitia James announced Tuesday.

In a 165-page report, investigators laid out a devastating portrait of behavior by the Democratic governor, substantiating an allegation that Cuomo embraced an executive assistant and reached under her blouse to grab her breast. Witnesses also described an environment in the governor’s office that was abusive and vindictive, with one of the women who came forward targeted for retaliation through the release of her personnel file, investigators said.

In all, the independent probe found that Cuomo harassed 11 women, including a state trooper whom the governor arranged to be put on his detail.

“This investigation has revealed conduct that corrodes the very fabric and character of our state government,” James (D) said at a news conference. The findings were the result of a months-long investigation and interviews with 179 people, including women who accused the governor of misconduct, Cuomo himself and a coterie of his top advisers. The probe was launched after multiple women accused Cuomo of inappropriate personal comments or unwelcome physical contact.

[From The Washington Post]

AG James didn’t take the bait when she was asked if she thought Cuomo should resign as governor because it’s not up to her. President Biden said back in March that if the state AG’s office found evidence of wrongdoing, then Cuomo should not only resign, he should be prosecuted. When asked about AG James’ report on Tuesday, President Biden reiterated his March comments and said: “He should resign. I understand the state legislature may decide to impeach, I do not know that for a fact.” Joe Biden is the head of Democratic Party and a more popular national figure than Handsy Andy Cuomo. Not that it matters though – Cuomo clearly believes he can survive this and his damage control is f–king bonkers. Cuomo released this public statement/video with all of these photos of him groping and inappropriately touching men and women. He thinks this is his defense?!? (Skip ahead to the 7-minute mark for the photos.)

The Queen, accompanied by The Duke of Edinburgh, opens the Francis Crick Institute in London

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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61 Responses to “NY Attorney General: Gov. Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed eleven women”

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  1. Angie says:

    His defense was so unapologetic and insane that my jaw was honestly on the floor. I can’t believe this is his strategy.

  2. Merricat says:

    The fact that he thinks he can defend this and survive it tells us exactly what he thinks of women.

    • Pinellas Pixie says:

      And what he thinks of himself as well. Like so many men, with and without power, Cuomo seems to think women exist solely for the pleasure of men. I hope he finds out soon how wrong he is. I hope they all do.

    • Robyn says:

      Not to mention what our culture thinks of women.

      Just when my admiration for Tish James couldn’t get any bigger…

  3. Becks1 says:

    His “apology” (response is probably a better word)….just ugh. I wish he would resign but I don’t think he will because he clearly does not think he did a damn thing wrong. When is his term up?

    • Darla says:

      Next year, just in time to drag NY Dems down with him in the midterms. He needs to get out. I think he will also cause trouble nationally, because the media will have his name on their lips every single time they interview any democrat.

  4. Miranda says:

    Speaking as a New Yorker, no, the arrogant prick cannot survive this. We didn’t like him that much to begin with, which is why no one stepped up to defend him when the accusations first arose. Get him the fuck out of here before he becomes a liability. We are not Republicans, we generally try to maintain some standards (often depressingly low ones, admittedly, but at least they exist). Men who are prolific sexual harassers are quite frequently guilty of worse crimes, and if he doesn’t resign, people WILL dig deeper and find out if that’s the case with him.

    • cassandra says:

      This. I would not be shocked at all if there are much worse skeletons in his closet and people are looking now. He was raised super privileged and his Daddy had the power to make problems disappear.

    • Darla says:

      100% agree Miranda.

    • Eurydice says:

      Exactly. His bullying goes beyond sexual harassment. People have been talking about his strong-arm tactics for years, but have been afraid to come forward.

    • paranormalgirl says:

      Another New Yorker here. He is not really all that popular. He was basically the lesser of two evils. He, like Giuliani when he was mayor following 9/11, thinks he can ride out his performance during COVID and he will be fine. No dude. You also killed people in nursing homes with your screwup early on during the pandemic. Just go already. Wonder if his proclivities had anything to do with Sandra Lee jumping ship.

    • TEALIEF says:

      Hear, Hear Miranda! As a New Yorker who landed here from other shores decades ago, I was done Cuomo before he played himself out with his very busy hands and mouth.

      He might have been the national equivalent to Neosporin and a Band-Aid (Brulidine and a plaster for the Brits), but being the best of the worst is nothing to brag about. I won’t get into state politics as much as I would like to.

      The final straw for me with Cuomo was Covid, when he all but stated that the disaster was all on Federal Government, knowing who was heading the Federal response. “Governors don’t do global pandemics.” Really! I knew Covid was going to be a problem in December of 2019. I ran and got the flu shot I was putting off hoping it would be a temporary buffer. As the Governor of a state with NYC as its international, financial, commercial hub, he should have known.

  5. Lili says:

    Damn i dont know what to think anymore, I fell in love with him from the uk watching how he was handling the virus. Its true people can be both bad and good at the same time. its such a shame he didnt keep his hands to himself as a public person, he should have been self aware enough to know that thing would one day catch up with him.

    • Annie says:

      I hope consequences come his way and he is put on blast or cancelled. This and the nursing home issues during the pandemic and his lack of empathy towards either of these situations speaks volumes about him.

      Far too many non-NY’s, international folks that watched CNN loved him during the pandemic because he stood up to trump and appeared to be firm on the pandemic in some respects, this is a great example that even though someone’s political beliefs may align with yours that doesn’t automatically make them a good person- just as does if someone doesn’t share your same beliefs that they are a bad person.

    • Darla says:

      He stepped into a terrible leadership vacuum we had in the states during Covid. I live in NY and know who he is. I’ve voted third party against him the past, and only voted for him in 2018 because I knew we needed someone to keep Trump off of us. I knew trump was going to come after NYS if he sensed any weakness here. These were the choices we had, and I won’t morally wimp out and go third party when I am secretly praying the dem wins.

      Anyway, with all that, I still was grateful for him during the worst of Covid, when we had that horror show coming out of DC every single day at prime time, remember? How did we survive that? But I didn’t know about the women, that I did not know. I knew he was a bully, and that there is something off about him. I never even suspected he was a sex pest no less was actually committing sexual assault by grabbing and groping women. I am so disgusted. But no one IMO needs to feel guilty about liking him during 2020. We were leaderless.

      • Merricat says:


      • Louisa says:

        I gladly voted for him in 2018. He is very strong on gun control and reproductive rights which are very important issues to me. I also liked that he was not intimidated by Trump and would stand up to him when so few others did. So this is really upsetting to me. I’m really angry. At him. I wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt until this report came out but no more. He has to go NOW. There is no way he can survive this and by staying he is going to f**k up the next election for dems in NY.

      • Darla says:

        Louisa I’m very angry at him too. I understand. I’m fuming.

      • Ann says:

        I’m with you. He stepped up when it was needed. I also won’t vote third party unless it makes sense strategically. Cuomo and Trump are both New Yorkers, and Cuomo could handle the corruption. He’s tough. He’s also a bully and, as it turns out, a harasser.

        I’m glad Biden came right out and said he should resign. I don’t think he will, but maybe the threat of more charges would do it.

    • JanetDR says:

      He’s my gov and I have been waiting to see what the investigation said before judging. Honestly, I was beginning to think there wasn’t much because it has been so long. I trust Tish James completely. I like our Lt. Gov and looking forward to her taking over. Time for you to be quiet Andrew.

      • Same says:

        I’ve been sitting here for months wondering how we went from believe women to let’s wait and see if we can find a way to clear the wealthy white man.

      • JanetDR says:

        His wealth and color had nothing to do with my wanting to see where the investigation went. His politics might have.

    • LillyfromLillooet says:

      @lili I live in New York now and I greatly admired his handling of the crisis. Every day he was on the radio talking us through and he did a superb job.

      I always wondering why he and Sandra Lee never did get married. I believe he had a creeper vibe about him that made her just not want to formalize their union.

  6. Sam the Pink says:

    His whole defense is basically “hey, I sexually harass men too!”

    Also, he seems to be using the defense that he’s Italian? I am not Italian American, but honestly, if you are, are you especially insulted by this? Like, is he basically suggesting that it’s in your ethnic character to be gropy and gross to others? Fells pretty odious to me.

    • L84Tea says:

      I’m Italian American, and yes, I find it gross and insulting.

    • OriginalLala says:

      I am Italian and I can’t believe he is using being Italian as an excuse for this…

      • Andrea says:

        I am an Italian American and we do get inappropriate kisses and touches from fellow Italians(men and women). My father is 78 and talks about “hot broads” and women in a sexual manner and has my entire life. He has had bikini clad women calendars in the past. Some things he says are a bit misogynist. I always regarded it as an old man Italian thing (my mother is horrible, very mean and selfish, so if I disregard my dad too, I have no family because I am an only child). My father was always very warm and loving and took care of me when I was little when my mother ignored me and later revealed she has always viewed me as a rival.

    • Amy Too says:

      It was horrible. Starting off by unequivocally denying that he has ever inappropriately touched people or sexually harassed anyone, and then basically going on to tell us exactly how and how often he inappropriately touches people. With pictures! He says he DOES kiss people on the face, forehead, and hands. He learned it from his mom, who kisses him like that. But there’s a huge difference between your parent grabbing your face and kissing you and your boss/mayor grabbing your face and kissing you. He DOES call people honey and sweetheart and other pet names. He DOES “banter” and tell “jokes” that maybe aren’t funny. But none of this can be sexual harassment or inappropriate in any way because he’s been doing it for decades very publicly? People can’t feel uncomfortable about him holding their faces and kissing them on the forehead, because he does it all the time and doesn’t try to hide it? Just because she wasn’t singled out for your harassment, doesn’t mean she didn’t feel grossed out and harassed! What kind of defense is that? “I kiss people ALL THE TIME without their consent so I can’t be a sexual harasser!” ????

      And them randomly, he throws in how he can’t be a sexual harasser because he has a family member who was sexually assaulted? He speaks for a LONG time in the beginning of the video about how hard it was for this family member to deal with her assault, but mostly how hard it was for him. I just kept thinking “How is this relevant!? What does this have to do with you making an employee feel majorly uncomfortable?” It was meant to set the tone by referencing him as some kind of avenging helper of assault victims, to draw sympathy and make people think “aww, poor man. Poor family member. That’s so sad! It must be so hard for him to be accused of sexual harassment!” And that’s not the thing you need to be trying to make people think in the middle of your APOLOGY to them.

      I also thought it was kind of gross of him to immediately go in and call out the employee who was a victim of sexual assault (by name!) as the person whose accusation hurt him the most, and then talk about their private conversations about what had happened to her and talk about how he was just trying to help her heal appropriately by asking inappropriate personal questions about her love life. Just like with his survivor family member, tying that in again and making it all seem directly related. It’s so gross that he names that woman and shames her for making *him* feel sad and disappointed by not accepting his “help,” “misinterpreting” his “innocent” comments, and accusing him of making her uncomfortable at work.

      It just seemed like literally everything he said was a direct confirmation of the accusations in the report. But for some reason, he still thinks he didn’t do it? Or that it doesn’t matter that a double-digit amount’s worth of women continually feel sexually harassed by him at work because…… reasons? And that these women are all mean harpies for daring to speak about the sort of behaviors that he literally provided photographic proof for in his own denial video? I didn’t get through the whole video, it was making me crazy, but wow. He seems awful.

    • LouLou says:

      Many years ago, I asked a boss to stop touching me. He said, “You may have to remind me a few times; I’m Italian.” I knew there was no hope, so I quit and had a gap on a resume I had to defend.

  7. Amy T says:

    The statement is beyond disrespectful to the women, to the voters of New York, to the investigation and even to himself. His inability to read the room, metaphorically speaking, says everything about the climate he created as a career public servant with a God complex. The rest? {Shudders}

  8. D says:

    The hubris! He doesn’t think he did anything wrong and he’s incensed that he’s being called out. His defense is kind of like Biden’s when people started pointing out his touchy feely ways, but in the case of Cuomo he not only harasses physically but he creates such a toxic work environment that everyone is afraid of him. So it’s never a case of him being affectionate, it’s him trying to intimidate and enforce his power over people. The Dems hate him and he has nobody left in his corner so I don’t know why he thinks he can survive this.

  9. Chaine says:

    Grabbing someone by the face like that does not show warmth, it shows a desire to dominate and control the other person.

    • Sam the Pink says:

      Here’s my thing with that – he says in the video that he learned the face touching from his parents. I mean, I can see a parent touching their child’s face because it’s a sentimental thing. But why would he then think it’s an acceptable gesture to do to people he’s literally just meeting? To me, face touching is an intimate thing, it’s something you do with people you are close to – doing it to strangers? Weird, dude.

      • Andrea says:

        I’ve been kissed on the face by many Italian Americans I barely knew growing up(usually on the cheeks) or touched on the back or shoulders. I honestly thought it was a cultural thing (I also am Italian American) and although uncomfortable, disregarded it. Many older Italian women have done this to me frequently as a child.

        My mother is also an inappropriate toucher with men that aren’t my father. I have cringed at how she has put her arms around other men over the years at various events (she is not Italian American).

      • Ann says:

        Touch is such an individual issue. People have their own boundaries, whether they arise from upbringing, culture, or just personal preference and experience. I am happy to shake hands and hug people when we greet, etc., but I don’t like people touching me randomly and without warning. It makes me uncomfortable.

        My husband’s family is touchy and my mother-in-law would often grab my hand hard, lean over me when I was reading and hold my shoulders, etc. She meant it with all affection and good intent but I didn’t like it, it felt possessive or something. My family is different about those things. I finally had to ask him to tell her, tactfully, so she wouldn’t take it the wrong way.

        It’s important to try to read people so you don’t make them feel uncomfortable or, worse, downright intimidated as these women did with Cuomo. What he did was BEYOND and I’m so upset and disappointed.

      • Sam the Pink says:

        Ann – that is a great point. You never know what a person is comfortable with. There are so many things that go into touch and boundaries. That is why, to me, it is always safest to defer to minimal contact, especially with those you’ve just met (a handshake, at most, is my rule). If you really wish to hug somebody for some reason, it can never hurt to ask, although sometimes I feel like that puts people on the spot – and can be weird if they decline. So in my mind, the less, the better, at least at first. Save the hugs for those you know a little better.

    • Merricat says:


    • Chaine says:

      Ya’ll he is not just “touching” faces, he is grabbing and holding their faces, sometimes with both of his hands! I just don’t see how that could ever be anything other than a control gesture.

  10. Golly Gee says:

    He actually had the gall to go to Tina Tchen, the head of Time’s Up To ask for advice on how to respond to the harassment charges.

  11. Loretta says:

    I’m Italian and I’m insulted by Cuomo’s statement.

  12. Sofia says:

    It is shitty to blame being Italian on grabbing and touching women inappropriately. And “I touch men like this too” and “Look at all the other politicians kissing and hugging” is not a good defence. It’s apparently been rumoured for years that he’s not a great guy, tough to work with and for and very arrogant so not surprised at the way it’s being handled on his end.

  13. Sam87 says:

    I’ve been through this and these men absolutely believe their lies and gaslighting.

    My employer retaliated and demoted me after I complained internally. When I resigned, I filed a complaint with the EEOC, who did not take action so I filed a lawsuit. The case was settled out of court but I had to sign an NDA, pay high taxes on the settlement, and then pay the lawyers a third. In the end the financial compensation was tiny compared to the loss in past and future wages and the damage to my reputation.

    I am still happy I fought back and finally 2 weeks ago I was notified that 2 years after my EEOC complaint, a federal investigation was opened into my former employer. Apparently there were dozens of complaints over the years but I was the only one to file a lawsuit. I am able to fully cooperate with the federal investigation and have a call with the investigator tomorrow.

    Hearing Cuomo (who I voted for!) use the same language, excuses, and gaslighting that my employer used was repulsive. He needs to go.

    PS Tish James is a badass. Grateful to have her as my AG!

  14. Twin falls says:

    I, too, took comfort in his handling of the Covid crisis in contrast to the shit show nationally. Turns out he was effective in a crisis while also being an employer who abused women and created a toxic work environment.

    165 page report by AG James and I thought he’s likely guilty of what is in that report, then to hear his response and realize it is that of an abuser 💯 He did those things, and probably more, and he must lose his job.

  15. Liz version 700 says:

    Wow this man is a nightmare. The hubris and endless arrogance. Just Wow! Let’s be honest, if they could prove he harassed 11 women, imagine the things he has gotten away with tff he at couldn’t be provided?

  16. AmieDee says:

    There’s an outstanding Lieutenant Governor in New York, Kathy Hochul. She should be the new governor and Cuomo is deliberately preventing her from succeeding to the office. He tried to prevent Andrea Stewart-Cousins from succeeding to the NYS Senate leadership and, ultimately, failed. Women will get NYS back on track and Cuomo needs to get out of the way.

  17. Moira's Rose's Garden says:

    So that investigation only covered a short amount of time. I guarandamtee that there are additional skeletons in the closet.

    There is no way he’s going anywhere–he’s made himself out to be the LBJ of NY politics (working across the aisle…wink…wink) its fairly certain that the GOP and former GOP reps posing as Democrats don’t give a duck about it.

    Now let’s see what happens with the 7 figure book deal he got even after the allegations were out in the public. In 2021, he’ll probably get another follow up deal.

    There’s a reason that the Kennedys never liked him, he’s a slimeball from way back. And how’d you like to be any of the daughters and having to admit he’s your father? :shivers:

    • Same says:

      You can tell by the tone and disinterest (50 comments?) on this thread. He should have been removed from office when the avalanche of complaints came in but no, we didn’t believe those women, we went with benefit of the doubt , let’s wait for an investigation. We knew then and we know now and no one wants to make eye contact …

      • Darla says:

        Not me, I can look anyone in the eye. I tweeted as soon as these came to light that he should resign that day, and I knew the accusations were true. I may have even blogged about it, but I’m not sure I get so tired. I was thinking of blogging about this today, but I have been very lazy lately. Although that powerpoint presentation showing him groping Al Gore as some sort of alibi is really crying out to me.

  18. Jessica says:

    I haven’t lived in NYS since 2015, but even back then, he wasn’t well liked. I know I was always turned off by how obvious it was he got elected because of his father and how little he cared about the rest of the state outside of NYC. It was kind of a trip to suddenly see everyone loving him during the pandemic. There’s something about NY politics that attracts corruption and harassment and I don’t know what the X factor is. Of course I now live in FL with DeathSantis, so I can’t really speak about bad governors.

  19. Renee says:

    His arrogance and delusion astound me. I mean all of these powerful men really believe they can do what they want when they want. I know it is because so many got away with it for so long. But honestly, listening to his “apology” or whatever that was yesterday, I was lost for words. He LITERALLY had no clue how badly he sounded! This creep needs to resign immediately and go away.

    On a sidenote, I wonder what Sandra Lee has to say about all of this? I always liked her and felt like Cuomo took advantage of her.

    • april says:

      Well, she didn’t come to his defense so I think that’s telling. I agree with you in that she probably ended up with a lot of psychological trauma from dating him.

  20. AmyB says:

    Governor Andrew Cuomo is now facing even more serious trouble as New York prosecutors announced that they have opened separate criminal investigations into his conduct toward current and former staffers.

    I do believe that every person, of course, has their right to defend themselves within our justice system. Yet, I find it very interesting that Democrats are demanding, and insisting that Cuomo resign, as a result of these horrible sexual allegations towards his female staff members. I personally am horrified of these sexual accusations towards him, and of his statement. UGH!!

    In contrast to the GOP party, who could not take the same stance against our disgraced, twice-impeached ex-President Trump – who has a huge history of sexual misconduct. Allegations of rape, sexual harassment by some 25 women. Oh, and that was even before the election of 2016, when we heard in Trump’s own words, describe how he felt about women: “Grab ’em by the pussy.” 🙄

    You might not like the Democratic party, but they sure as hell aren’t hiding under a rock like the GOP party did when it came to Donald Trump. It was all “Fake News” … Somehow I doubt that, given Trump’s track record.

    Personally, both Cuomo and Trump should face the consequences of their predatory and disgusting behavior. PERIOD.

    • Same says:

      I wouldn’t die on that hill, if this jackass had been a Republican we would have actually believed those women months ago … benefit of the doubt, deserves to defend himself , let’s wait for the investigation….
      It was a double standard then and it is now.

      This is in no way a defense of the GOP because they are deeply gross— but Cuomo’s popularity and his cutesy skits with his brother protected him and that’s just as gross.

      • AmyB says:

        Agreed. I am all for due process and the judicial process to carry out it’s duty. You think if Cuomo had been a Republican, those women would have been believed? Look at Brett Kavanaugh and Christine Blasely-Ford. I don’t think so. How many GOP members believed her??

        But yes, the way Chris Cuomo covered this up is gross. The whole thing is gross 100%

      • Same says:

        Re read my comment. This thread is still full of lukewarm outrage and point out “oh but the GOP” is yet another herring.

        We have this dude a pass because he pissed off Trump.

  21. Julia K says:

    Would love to hear what Sandra Lee has to say. She knows a lot.

  22. Leah says:

    He might as well resign today and get it over with. He’ll be sorry if he drags out the inevitable. Somebody ought to give the pathetic perv a teddy bear to hold and caress. Unbelievable. smh