The Cuomo Scandal Grows
New York’s smug, predatory, and decidedly unfunny governor is finally on borrowed time.
Who does this clown Andy Cuomo think he is? And what makes him think he can simply dismiss multiple independent charges of sexual harassment as mere misinterpretations of his comedic gifts?
“At work sometimes I think I am being playful and make jokes that I think are funny,” Governor Cuomo said in a bizarre prepared statement released on Sunday. “I do, on occasion, tease people in what I think is a good-natured way. … I mean no offense and only attempt to add some levity and banter to what is a very serious business. I now understand that my interactions may have been insensitive or too personal and that some of my comments, given my position, made others feel in ways I never intended. I acknowledge some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation. To the extent anyone felt that way, I am truly sorry about that.”
Apparently, then, kissing an unsuspecting subordinate on the mouth is just “good-natured” teasing. And telling a 25-year-old executive assistant who once played soccer against one of his daughters that she should get a tattoo on her butt to hide it when she wears a dress, and asking that same young subordinate whether she’d ever had sex with older men, was just an effort “to add some levity and banter.”
But when it’s, say, Brett Kavanaugh we’re talking about, and when his sterling reputation is being sullied by the flimsiest of 36-year-old sexual assault allegations from a flaky, hard-left college professor, it’s no laughing matter.
“I believe Dr. [Christine Blasey] Ford’s testimony is very compelling,” Cuomo said in a September 2018 press release directed to President Donald Trump during Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearings. “Only a political skeptic could find a reason to disbelieve her. What is her possible motive to lie? … If you do not insist that Judge Kavanaugh take a polygraph, it will be further evidence that you are putting political motivation over your constitutional obligation. Do not aid and abet a lie. Demand a polygraph.”
Worse yet, he offered this sanctimonious bit of grandstanding during the hearings: “There is a disrespect for women that [the Trump] administration chronically exemplifies. After the MeToo movement, they did absolutely nothing when it came to sexual harassment. They have always diminished the charges of women — always, consistently. And they’re doing it again.”
So: Believe the accuser when the charge is sexual harassment. Unless the accused is me.
As for his little brother Chris, the CNN anchor who repeatedly yukked it up on-air with Andy during the pandemic’s early days, all he can tell the network’s 19 viewers now is that he’s “aware of what’s going on with my brother, and obviously, I cannot cover it because he is my brother.” But, “I have always cared very deeply about these issues, and profoundly so. I just wanted to tell you that.”
Uh-huh. Profoundly so.
Lindsey Boylan, 36, was the first Cuomo accuser to come forward. She did so back in December to little effect, before publishing her story on Medium. Her experiences are detailed and compelling. Then 25-year-old Charlotte Bennett came forward Saturday and then again yesterday in The New York Times. And yesterday evening, a third accuser, 33-year-old Anna Ruch, said Cuomo inappropriately grabbed and kissed her at a 2019 wedding.
Cuomo is the least sympathetic figure of all public servants. Smug, self-righteous, and utterly unrepentant, even his non-apologetic apology sounds like an invitation to pound sand. And his call for an “independent review” of these allegations is, as even CNN’s Chris Cillizza notes, one of the oldest tricks in the book — a desperate attempt to buy time until the whole thing blows over.
Where on earth are all the “MeToo” Democrats demanding Cuomo’s resignation? It’s a great question. And it would seem that the Emmy Award-winning governor, whose actions have caused the unnecessary deaths of countless of his state’s elderly citizens, has already done more than enough to be forced from office.
One Democrat, thankfully, has finally seen and heard enough. Last night, New York Representative Kathleen Rice tweeted, “The time has come. The Governor must resign.”
Another one has questions. “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 to.” That was none other than Hillary Clinton. The jokes write themselves.
Let’s hope these two are the first of many such calls for accountability. This not-so-funny guv has got to go.
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