New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has been besieged by several scandals of his own making, one of which is multiple allegations from numerous current and former female staffers of sexual harassment and impropriety in the workplace.
The state’s Attorney General Letitia James (D) had launched a probe into those allegations earlier in the year and now reports indicate that James’ investigators are set to finally interview Cuomo himself on Saturday, the Washington Examiner reported.
That news has been widely viewed as a sign that the investigation is nearing completion, at which point a public report of the probe’s findings will be released, according to the attorney general’s office, potentially by the end of summer or early fall.
Interview set for Saturday in sexual misconduct probe
The New York Times was the first to report that an interview with Gov. Cuomo had been arranged for Saturday, per two anonymous sources said to be “familiar with the matter.”
That interview comes as the now four-month-long investigation, led by former federal prosecutor Joon Kim and employment discrimination attorney Anne Clark, has reportedly already held extensive interviews with the governor’s multiple accusers as well as other top officials and staffers in Cuomo’s administration.
The obvious intent of the probe is to determine whether Cuomo or any of his staffers violated any laws in terms of the alleged harassment and misconduct, which the governor has repeatedly denied.
Concurrent with the attorney general’s investigation is a separate impeachment probe within New York’s Democrat-controlled General Assembly that is also looking into the sexual misconduct allegations along with some of the other scandals Cuomo stands accused of, such as his fatal mishandling of COVID in nursing homes and allegations of misuse of state resources, among other things.
Discrediting the investigation with allegations of “political motivations”
In response to the news of the impending interview with investigators, Gov. Cuomo’s top adviser, Richard Azzopardi, declined to confirm or deny the report but instead cast aspersions on Attorney General James and her purported “political motivations.”
“We have said repeatedly that the governor doesn’t want to comment on this review until he has cooperated,” Azzopardi said in a statement, and added that “the continued leaks are more evidence of the transparent political motivation of the attorney general’s review.”
The Times noted that it is increasingly expected that James will mount a bid for the governorship in 2022, setting up a potential primary challenge against Cuomo as he seeks re-election for another term.
Motivations won’t matter if allegations are proven true
The Associated Press, which also claimed to have confirmed the Saturday interview involving investigators and the governor via two unnamed sources, also noted that this was at least the second time that Azzopardi had attempted to discredit the probe by calling into question James’ potential political motivations.
Regardless of what may have motivated the attorney general to launch this investigation in the first place, it has begun and appears to be nearing a conclusion, and if it ultimately turns out that Cuomo’s accusers were telling the truth, the governor may not need to worry about a primary challenge from James as he could be forced to resign or even be impeached and removed from office in the coming months.