Andrew Cuomo has criticised “reckless and dangerous” politicians for calling for him to step down as he told New Yorkers on Friday: “I’m not going to resign.”
New York’s governor has said he wants people to “wait for the facts” regarding the sexual harassment allegations against him, adding that he doesn’t want to speculate on “people’s possible motives”.
“Women have a right to come forward and be heard and I encourage that fully,” he said in a conference call.
“There is still a question of the truth. I did not do what has been alleged. Period.
“I won’t speculate about people’s possible motives but I can tell you as a former attorney general who has gone through this situation many times there are often many motivations to make an allegation and that is why you need to know the facts before you make a decision.”
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The Democratic governor has faced widespread calls for his resignation in the last few days, with such calls including more than half of New York’s Democratic congressional members.
Representatives Jerry Nadler, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Jamaal Bowman, Mondaire Jones, Nydia Velazquez, Adriano Espaillat, Carolyn Maloney, Grace Meng, Antonio Delgado, Brian Higgins and Yvette Clarke were among them.
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They joined Kathleen Rice, who had previously called for Mr Cuomo to resign.
Making reference to “cancel culture”, Mr Cuomo later criticised those who had demanded he quit, suggesting they had not separated fact from opinion.
He said: “Politicians who don’t know a single fact but yet form a conclusion on an opinion are in my opinion reckless and dangerous.
“The people of New York should not have confidence in a politician who takes a position without knowing any facts or substance.”
Mr Cuomo is accused by several women, including some of his female aides, of behaving in a sexually suggestive manner and making similar such remarks.
One woman said the 63-year-old had asked her if she would ever have sex with an older man, while another said he had once kissed her without her consent.
The latter said Mr Cuomo’s other aides had then publicly smeared her when she accused him.
Mr Cuomo has repeatedly denied touching anyone inappropriately and has previously said he was sorry if he made anyone feel uncomfortable.
An review into his conduct is currently ongoing.