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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (L) and Melissa DeRosa, secretary to the governor, at a news conference in March 2020 in New York City. Photo: Bennett Raglin/Getty Images

Melissa DeRosa, the top aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), announced Sunday night that she's resigning from her role as secretary to the governor.

Why it matters: DeRosa's resignation comes days after N.Y. Attorney General Letitia James office released a report finding that Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women. DeRosa was mentioned multiple times in the report. Cuomo's attorneys have denounced James' findings.

  • "CBS This Morning" is due to air on Monday morning an interview with Brittany Commisso, who has filed a criminal complaint accusing Cuomo of groping her.
  • Commisso, referred to in the state attorney general's report as "Executive Assistant #1," names DeRosa, among other staff, in her allegations concerning Cuomo and what James' report describes as "a hostile work environment for women."

The big picture: DeRosa joined Cuomo's administration in 2013 and rose to became one of his most trusted aides and fiercest defenders. She is the first senior aide to Cuomo to resign in the wake of the sexual misconduct allegations.

  • Cuomo strongly denies any wrongdoing and has refused to step down, despite calls for his resignation from leading Democrats including President Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.).
  • James' report notes that "Executive Assistant #1" claimed she was "terrified" that if DeRosa or another key aide learned of her accusations she would lose her job.
  • Investigators also found that DeRosa asked a lawyer for "a full file" on former aide Lindsey Boylan after she alleged in a tweet that Cuomo was "one of the biggest abusers of all time."

What they're saying: DeRosa did not mention the allegations against her or Cuomo in a statement to news outlets late Sunday, but said: "Personally, the past 2 years have been emotionally and mentally trying.

  • "I am forever grateful for the opportunity to have worked with such talented and committed colleagues on behalf of our state," DeRosa added.
  • Representatives for Cuomo did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Sep 23, 2021 - Health

Howard Zucker resigns as New York health commissioner

Howard Zucker, commissioner of the New York State Department of Health, speaks during a news conference. Photo: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

New York State health commissioner Howard Zucker resigned on Thursday following pressure for his role in withholding nursing home COVID-19 death numbers under former Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Why it matters: Zucker led New York's response to COVID-19 last year but came under fire for reportedly undercounting the death toll in nursing homes by as much as 50%.

Anti-abortion activists' Supreme Court dreams are coming true

Photo illustration: Annelise Capossela. Photos: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

This is the moment the conservative legal movement has been building toward for decades: The solidly conservative Supreme Court is about to hear two major abortion cases within a month of each other.

Why it matters: All of this is likely to end with significant new restrictions on abortion and a clear path for Republican-led states to win the next big abortion cases, too — the culmination of a long and bitter fight for control of the judiciary.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

Trump's volatile return to the stock market

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios Visuals 

Donald Trump this week became both a meme stock and a social-media entrepreneur at the same time, by announcing that a new company called Trump Media & Technology Group was going to merge with an existing company listed on the stock market.

Why it matters: The medium-term promise of Trump's media company is that it will replace Twitter for anybody wanting to keep track of Trump's messages. The short-term promise is that it can be a hot new speculative vehicle for people wanting to get rich quick in the stock market.