Biden Finally Speaks Out on Cuomo Allegations
Saying that the investigation concerning allegations of sexual misconduct against New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo should go forward, President Joe Biden said Cuomo should resign if the claims are proven true.
Biden made the comments in an interview that aired Tuesday with George Stephanopoulos of ABC News.
Multiple women have said Cuomo sexually harassed them, including three women who worked for him. One woman still working for Cuomo has said, according to a published report, that she was groped by the governor in the Executive Mansion. Multiple Democratic elected officials, including U.S. Sens. Chuck Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, have called upon Cuomo to resign, though Cuomo has said he has no plans to do so.
In the ABC interview, Stephanopoulos brought up the subject.
EXCLUSIVE: @GStephanopoulos on Gov. Andrew Cuomo: “If the investigation confirms the claims of the women, should he resign?”
“Yes,” Pres. Biden says. “I think he’ll probably end up being prosecuted, too.” https://t.co/a6qfOJ9Byp pic.twitter.com/EiC63wtnUo
— ABC News (@ABC) March 17, 2021
“If the investigation confirms the claims of the women, should he resign?” Stephanopoulos said.
“Yes,” Biden replied. “I think he’ll probably end up being prosecuted, too.”
When asked about the issue of resigning now based on calls from Democrats to do so, Biden side-stepped a judgment.
“That’s a judgment for them to make,” he said.
Biden, who last year was accused by former staffer Tara Reade of sexual assault dating back to 1993 when Biden was a U.S. senator, then turned philosophical.
“Here’s my position, and it’s been my position since I wrote the Violence Against Women Act: A woman should be presumed to [be] telling the truth and should not be scapegoated and be victimized by her coming forward. Number one,” he said.
“But there should be an investigation to determine whether what she says is true. That’s what’s going on now,” Biden added.
Stephanopoulos asked Biden again if whether Cuomo would be obliged to step down if the claims against the governor are verified.
“That’s what I think happens,” Biden said. “And by the way, it may very well be, there could be a criminal prosecution that is attached to it.”
Biden then said the investigation is central to whatever comes next.
“I just don’t know. But let the investigation … I don’t know what it is, but I start with the presumption, it takes a lot of courage for a woman to come forward. Some are not — anyway, it takes a lot of courage to come forward, so the presumption is it should be taken seriously, and it should be investigated, and that’s what’s underway now,” Biden said.
Some found Biden’s comments ironic given accusations of unwanted touching that have dogged Biden for years.
Biden gets away with exactly what Cuomo is accused of https://t.co/GFWWVZTmws
— Tara Reade ? (@ReadeAlexandra) March 16, 2021
Remember when Kamala said she believed Tara Reade……. yet now there are 7 women and she won’t condemn Cuomo…. something here really smells and I think it’s Biden.
— Juanita Broaddrick (@atensnut) March 13, 2021
Earlier this week, former Cuomo aide Charlotte Bennett — who has said Cuomo asked her inappropriate question on work time — spent four hours with investigators.
Bennett “detailed her allegations of sexual harassment and provided the investigators with more than 120 pages of contemporaneous records, as well as other examples of documentary evidence, to corroborate her accusations against Gov. Cuomo and his senior staff,” her attorney, Debra Katz, said in a statement, according to CNBC.
Katz said Bennett gave the investigators “detailed information about the sexually hostile work environment the Governor fostered in both his Manhattan and Albany offices and his deliberate effort to create rivalries and tension among female staffers on whom he bestowed attention.”
“We remain confident that their investigation will substantiate Charlotte’s claims of sexual harassment against Gov. Cuomo, as well as the failure of his senior staff to meet their mandatory reporting requirements under the very laws he signed,” Katz said
“One piece of new information that came to light today was the Governor’s preoccupation with his hand size and what the large size of his hands indicated to Charlotte and other members of his staff,” she added.
Hand size became a running joke in the 2016 Republican presidential primary when Republican Sen. Marco Rubio said former President Donald Trump had small hands.
“And you know what they say about guys with small hands,” Rubio said in one innuendo-laced remark, according to NBC News.
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