Assembly Speaker Heastie: Democratic majority has lost confidence in Gov. Cuomo
The attorney general's report on Gov. Andrew Cuomo's sexual harassment case has sent shockwaves through Albany with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle calling for his resignation and experts warning this could be very damaging to his career.
The investigation found that Cuomo sexually harassed nearly a dozen women in and out of state government and worked to retaliate against one of his accusers, New York's attorney general announced Tuesday. Cuomo was defiant in denying the accusations.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie issued a statement saying, "After our conference this afternoon to discuss the attorney general's report concerning sexual harassment allegations against Gov. Cuomo, it is abundantly clear to me that the governor has lost the confidence of the Assembly Democratic majority and that he can no longer remain in office. Once we receive all relevant documents and evidence from the attorney general, we will move expeditiously and look to conclude our impeachment investigation as quickly as possible."
Christopher Malone, a political science professor at Molloy College, says the ramifications on Cuomo's political future cannot be denied.
"You know...on a scale of 1 to 10, it was a 10 in terms of damage to the governor," says Malone.
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, who would be next in line if Cuomo resigned, said in part in a statement, "The attorney general's investigation has documented repulsive and unlawful behavior by the governor towards women. I believe these brave women and admire their courage coming forward. No one is above the law."
Malone says any proceedings would likely not take long.
"It would be a trial in the Senate that would last weeks, not months," says Malone.