New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) insists that he did not know he was acting inappropriately or making the woman who accused him of sexual harassment feel uncomfortable.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Cuomo said, “It was unintentional, and I truly and deeply apologize for it.”
However, Lindsey Boylan, one of the three women who has accused the governor of harassment, took issue with his statements. In a tweet, she asked, “How can New Yorkers trust you [Cuomo] to lead our state if you ‘don’t know’ when you’ve been inappropriate with your own staff?”
How can New Yorkers trust you @NYGovCuomo to lead our state if you “don’t know” when you’ve been inappropriate with your own staff?— Lindsey Boylan (@LindseyBoylan) March 3, 2021
Boylan was not the only one to criticize Cuomo’s comments. Debra Katz, an attorney for Charlotte Bennett who has also accused Cuomo of harassment, claimed, “The Governor’s press conference was full of falsehoods and inaccurate information, and New Yorkers deserve better.”
Cuomo has been accused of unwanted touching and kissing and asking about former aides’ personal lives.
On Wednesday, he said, “I now understand that I acted in a way that made people feel uncomfortable. It was unintentional, and I truly and deeply apologize for it.”
Still, he maintained that he “never touched anyone inappropriately” and “I certainly never meant to offend anyone, or hurt anyone, or cause anyone any pain. That is the last thing I would ever want to do.”
He also said he was not aware that he made the women who have accused him of harassment uncomfortable.
State lawmakers also weighed in on Cuomo’s response:
I would argue that it’s highly inappropriate to kiss a staffer on the lips without their unequivocal consent, and highly inappropriate for the governor to put his hands on the face of a woman and grab her without her consent. These denials are very sad to watch. https://t.co/EY8LSlJuyQ— Julia Salazar (@JuliaCarmel__) March 3, 2021
Cuomo keeps repeating he hasn’t touched anyone inappropriately when there is literally a photo of him touching someone inappropriately.— Yuh-Line Niou (@yuhline) March 3, 2021
Andrew Cuomo wants you to know that if only the women had the courage to confront the Governor of New York about how he made them feel, he wouldn’t be in this mess, and that this has been an incredibly difficult time for him as well.— Alessandra Biaggi (@Biaggi4NY) March 3, 2021
The Governor of NY is trying to normalize his unwanted kiss of a 33 y/o woman by saying this is how I greet "hundreds of people".— Alessandra Biaggi (@Biaggi4NY) March 3, 2021
The state’s attorney general is investigating the allegations against Cuomo.