ALBANY, N.Y. (WIVB) – The investigation into allegations of sexual harassment and inappropriate conduct against Governor Andrew Cuomo being overseen by New York State Attorney General Letitia James appears to be picking up steam this week. Investigators are scheduled to soon interview another accuser.
Ana Liss, a former policy and operations aide in the Cuomo administration, has been contacted by the investigators and is scheduled to speak with them this week, Liss tells our sister station in Rochester. Earlier this month, she told WROC that the work environment in the administration was toxic, retaliatory, and hostile.
Liss is one of at least seven women to accuse the governor of wrong-doing. James appointed attorneys Joon Kim and Anne Clark to lead the independent investigation into Cuomo’s alleged conduct. The New York State Assembly is separately preparing an impeachment inquiry, which is expected to examine the allegations, the administration’s handling of nursing home data during the COVID-19 pandemic, and questions about the Mario Cuomo Bridge.
Cuomo has shot down calls for his resignation. When he most recently answered questions from the media on Friday, he said, “There are now reviews on the way. No one wants them to happen more quickly and more thoroughly than I do. Let them do it.”
“Wait for the facts. Wait for the facts. Then you can have an opinion. I am confident that when New Yorkers know the facts from the review, I am confident in the decision based on the facts,” he added. “But wait for the facts.”
Investigators met with another accuser, Charlotte Bennett for more than four hours on Monday, Bennett’s attorney Debra Katz said.
“One piece of new information that came to light (Monday) was the Governor’s preoccupation with his hand size and what the large size of his hands indicated to Charlotte and other members of his staff,” Katz said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, the highest ranking Democrat in the state legislature to call for Cuomo’s resignation answered questions on Tuesday. Stewart-Cousins first said the governor should step down on March 7th.
“I had told the governor before I said what I said (and) why I was going to say it” Stewart-Cousins told reporters. “I thought there were a number of allegations and that it’s just distracting. I would think that it would be distracting.”
Stewart-Cousins, who will be negotiating a budget with Cuomo and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie in the coming weeks, added, “What remains important though is the focus on New York and New Yorkers and our obligation.”