CNBC’s Contessa Brewer reports on allegations from a former Cuomo staffer that the governor sexually harassed her, with unwanted kissing and touching. For access to live and exclusive video from CNBC subscribe to CNBC PRO: https://cnb.cx/2NGeIvi
A former aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday accused the governor of kissing her without her consent while she served as deputy secretary for economic development in 2018.
Lindsey Boylan, now a candidate for Manhattan borough president, released a detailed account of her allegations against her former boss in a blog post. Boylan made public her harassment accusations against the governor in December, though she did not go into specifics at the time.
Cuomo Press Secretary Caitlin Girouard said in a statement, “Ms. Boylan’s claims of inappropriate behavior are quite simply false.”
In the same press release from Cuomo’s office, four other members of his staff disputed a single detail of Boylan’s account. Boylan wrote that while on a plane from a Western New York event in 2017 with the governor, a press aide and state trooper, Cuomo told her, “Let’s play strip poker.” Cuomo’s office released a record of all flights from October 2017 and said “there was no flight where Lindsey was alone with the Governor, a single press aide, and a NYS Trooper.”
The record does show Boylan was on several flights with the governor and other members of his staff. Boylan did not claim in her blog post that she was alone on the flight with just the governor, a press aide and state trooper. But the four Cuomo staffers said in a statement included in the release, “We were on each of these October flights and this conversation did not happen.”
The new details emerged as Cuomo is fighting allegations of mishandling nursing home data and policies at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in New York last year.
The U.S. Department of Justice has launched a criminal probe into coronavirus-related nursing home deaths in the state. New York Attorney General Letitia James, Cuomo’s fellow Democrat, released a report last month saying the state had underreported Covid-19 deaths in nursing homes by as much as 50%.
Cuomo’s behavior toward colleagues has seen renewed scrutiny after New York Assemblyman Ron Kim accused the governor of vowing to “destroy” him after Kim criticized Cuomo’s handling of nursing home outbreaks. Cuomo’s senior advisor denied that Kim’s allegation is true.
In her blog post Wednesday, Boylan referenced Kim’s accusations and expanded on her own, including screenshots of emails from her time working for the governor.
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