Aug 3, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden calls on Cuomo to resign after sexual harassment findings

Cuomo and Biden
Cuomo with Biden and Sen. Chuck Schumer in September 2020. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Biden called on New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) to resign on Tuesday after an independent investigation found that Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women, including employees in his office, in violation of state and federal law.

Why it matters: Unlike dozens of other prominent Democrats, Biden held off on calling for Cuomo's resignation in March when the allegations of sexual misconduct first emerged.

What he's saying: "Yes," Biden said after being asked whether he believed Cuomo should resign and if he stood by his comments in March.

  • "Let's take one thing at a time here. I think he should resign. I understand that the state legislature may decide to impeach. I don't know that for fact. I have not read all that data," Biden said.
  • "Look, I'm not going to flyspeck this. I'm sure there were some embraces that are totally innocent. But apparently the attorney general decided there were things that weren't."
  • Of note: Biden would not say if he believes Cuomo should be prosecuted.

Between the lines: Cuomo is one of the most powerful Democratic governors in the country, and he and Biden have been friends and political allies for years.

  • Biden was also close to Cuomo's father, former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo.

The big picture: The investigation overseen by New York Attorney General Letitia James found that Cuomo engaged in unwanted and inappropriate groping, kissing, hugging and comments that accusers called deeply humiliating, uncomfortable, offensive and inappropriate.

  • The report also found that Cuomo and his staff took steps to retaliate against at least one former employee for coming forward with her story, and fostered a "toxic" workplace that enabled sexual harassment to occur.

Go deeper: Read the full report

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