New York Governor Andrew Cuomo just gave a press conference that was billed as a coronavirus briefing with an “announcement.” This comes following a third woman coming forward to accuse Cuomo of sexual harassment, and mounting calls to resign from his fellow Democrats. His fellow Democrats also stripped his emergency powers last night.
The presser was virtually indistinguishable from any other news conference he’s given on the coronavirus, complete with zero mentions of his nursing home scandal.
Then he turned to the announcement, which has to do with his sexual harassment scandal.
“I fully support a woman’s right to come forward and I think it should be encouraged in every way,” Cuomo 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. I feel awful about it and frankly I am embarrassed by it. That’s not easy to say. But that’s the truth. But this is what I want you to know, and I want you to know about this directly.”
He then played it all off as misunderstandings. “I never touched anyone inappropriately, I never touched anyone inappropriately. I never knew at the time I was making anyone feel uncomfortable. I never knew at the time I was making anyone feel uncomfortable. And I certainly never ever meant to offend anyone or hurt anyone or cause anyone any pain. that is the last thing I would ever want to do. I ask the people of this state to wait for the facts frrom the attorney generals report before forming an opinion. Get the facts please before forming an opinions. And the Attorney General is doing that review and I will fully cooperate with it, and then you will have the facts, make a decision once you have the facts.”
Cuomo then told us that he, a 63-year-old man, learned a whole lot from all this. “I have learned from what has been an incredibly difficult situation for me as well as for other people, and I’ve learned an important lesson. I’m sorry for any pain I have caused anyone I never intended it and I will be the better for this experience.”
A question and answer section followed. In it one person asked Cuomo about the third accuser, who Cuomo was photographed with his hands on her face. The person asking the question noted that Cuomo puts his hands on lots of peoples faces, effectively giving Cuomo a question that set him up to play defense. Cuomo then confirmed that there are hundreds of pictures of him kissing “women, men, and children” because “it is my usual and customary way of greeting.”
And, amid growing calls for his resignation, Cuomo made it clear that he wouldn’t resigning.
Perhaps that will change when one of the “hundreds” of other women he’s kissed come forward.