You are reading

Several Queens Electeds Call for Cuomo to Resign, View Sexual Harassment Allegations as No Joke

Governor Andrew Cuomo (Darren McGee/ Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

March 2, 2021 By Christina Santucci

Several Queens elected officials are calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to step down in the wake of three women accusing him of sexual harassment.

Politicians — such as state Sen. Jessica Ramos, Assemblywoman Jessica González-Rojas and Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer — have said that he should resign.

Meanwhile, others — including U.S. Reps. Carolyn Maloney, Grace Meng and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as well as Assembly members Nily Rozic and Catalina Cruz — have called for an independent investigation — a move that is currently in the works.

The most recent calls for his resignation come after a third accuser — Anna Ruch — told the NY Times about an unwanted advance by Cuomo at a wedding in 2019. The paper also published a photo from the event of Cuomo gripping Ruch’s face in his hands.

“That photo. It’s chilling. Like I said Saturday night, #CuomoResign,” Van Bramer tweeted.

González-Rojas and Ramos also posted about the governor on social media.

“It’s time for Governor Cuomo to resign,” González-Rojas tweeted on Monday evening. Just hours later, Sen. Jessica Ramos wished political candidates good luck on their first day of collecting signatures to get on the ballot, and added, “It’s also a great day for the governor to resign.”

If Cuomo were to step down or is removed, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul would finish out his term.

Meanwhile, Assemblyman Zohran Mamdani also joined five other Socialist state legislators in issuing a statement that advocated for the governor’s impeachment.

“Impeachment proceedings are the appropriate avenue for us to pursue as legislators to hold the governor accountable for his many abuses of power and remove him from office,” the statement read. It was released from the office of Sen. Julia Salazar, who represents a district in Brooklyn.

Ruch is the third woman to come forward with allegations against the governor. Just days earlier, Charlotte Bennett, a former aide to Cuomo, accused him of asking her inappropriate questions about her sex life and making comments that she interpreted as overatures.

Meanwhile, another former staffer — Lindsey Boylan — published an essay last week, saying that the governor suggested they play strip poker and tried to kiss her in 2018. A spokesperson for Cuomo called Boylan’s allegations false.

The governor has not appeared publicly since last Thursday, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In a statement Sunday, Cuomo responded to what he called questions about his past interactions and denied propositioning or touching anyone inappropriately.

“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,” he said.

But State Sen. Michael Gianaris, who represents western Queens, called Cuomo’s statement “unfortunate” during an interview with NY1 Monday.

“There’s a big difference between ‘I’m sorry if you were offended by what I did,’ and ‘I’m sorry for what I did,’” Gianaris said. “His was more of the first and less of the latter.”

Cuomo had already been under fire for under-reporting deaths of COVID-19 victims from nursing homes. His admission followed a report by New York Attorney General Letitia James that found his administration failed to include thousands of deaths in its totals.

Assemblyman Ron Kim, who represents Flushing, and several other Democrats accused the governor last month of “intentional obstruction of justice” for withholding the nursing home data from state and federal officials.

Kim has suggested that the state legislature begin a formal investigation into the governor “with all options on the table, including impeachment.”

Kim had also been among legislators calling for Cuomo to be stripped of his COVID-19 emergency powers — which was in the works Tuesday afternoon.

The Assembly and state Senate had reportedly struck a deal to remove the governor’s expanded powers and require legislative review of modifications to and renewals of pandemic-related directives, according to published reports.

email the author: [email protected]
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Borough president hears from community members on budget needs throughout Queens

During a two-day public hearing on the mayor’s 2024 preliminary budget, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. listened to testimonies from 14 community board representatives, community stakeholders and members of the public on where the money should be spent in Queens. 

The public hearings were held both in-person and via Zoom on Monday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Queens Borough Hall. The testimonials will be used to develop the Queens Borough Board’s FY24 preliminary budget priorities in the coming weeks. 

‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Borough President Richards leads emotional candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards held a candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols outside Queens Borough Hall Monday, Jan. 30 after Nichols’ death at the hands of police officers in Memphis, Tenn., made national headlines for the brutality in which the officers beat him.

Almost immediately after news broke about Nichols’ death, the Memphis police officers who beat him to death were fired and charged with murder. The police department released the body cam footage of the fatal beating on Jan. 27, but many people, including some at the vigil, have refused to watch it due to its extremely graphic nature.

Queens Botanical Garden hosts Lunar New Year celebration with globally beloved Miffy

About 4,200 people joined the world-renowned beloved rabbit Miffy to ring in the Year of the Rabbit at Queens Botanical Garden’s Lunar New Year celebration on Saturday, Jan. 28. 

Queens Botanical Garden’s Lunar New Year celebration included a visit from Councilman Shekar Krishnan, who gave remarks, followed by a program of activities for all ages. Attendees enjoyed a lion dance performance, zodiac crafts, demonstrations, lucky plant sales and more. Miffy was in attendance for photos, story time and to greet children throughout the event.

Mets owner Steve Cohen hosts second community visioning session regarding development of area around Citi Field

Hundreds of community residents and leaders gathered at the Piazza Club inside Citi Field to participate in a visioning session regarding the development of a nearby 50-acre lot. This marked the second visioning session New York Mets owner Steve Cohen has hosted at Citi Field in January as he attempts to collect as much community feedback regarding the development as possible.

Attendees of the visioning session went to a series of interactive stations, sharing what mattered most to them when it came to improving the area around Citi Field, including preferred forms of year-round entertainment, ability to access different forms of transportation and attainable local jobs and training. Information and input was collected from the community in how they would like to see the lot utilized. A common theme among many of those who took part in the visioning session was the desire to see something built there that would bring a lot of economic opportunity to the community and provide year-round entertainment.

NewYork-Presbyterian Queens doctor aims to bring awareness to women’s heart health

With February marking the beginning of American Heart Month, a cardiologist from NewYork-Presbyterian Queens Hospital spoke with QNS about the importance of heart health for women.

According to attending cardiologist Dr. Joanna Troulakis, approximately 400,000 women die as a result of cardiovascular diseases each year in the United States. She noted that women have suffered more cardiovascular disease deaths than men in recent years. When it comes to heart attacks, the mortality rate for women is higher than men.

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

‘Where do we go now?’ Michaels set to close its doors in Fresh Meadows next month

The Michaels located at 187-04 Horace Harding Expwy. in Fresh Meadows will be permanently closing its doors on Feb. 23. The announcement that Michaels will be leaving the Fresh Meadows Shopping Center has led to an outpouring of reactions from many community members.

“We know this is disappointing to our customers in Queens, but we hope to continue to serve them at our other locations in New York City or online at Michaels.com,” a spokesperson for Michaels said in a statement to Patch.com.