The New York State Assembly’s Judiciary Committee met to address impeachment proceedings against Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday (August 9).
This was the first meeting of the judiciary committee since Attorney General Letitia James detailed the results of her investigation into sexual misconduct claims made against the governor.
The report found that Cuomo groped, kissed or made suggestive comments to 11 women in violation of the law, prompting local prosecutors to launch a criminal investigation and re-igniting calls for him to resign or be impeached.
In addition to the attorney general’s report, the state legislature has been conducting its own inquiry into Cuomo’s actions and could decide to impeach him.
The New York State Assembly’s Judiciary Committee, which is reviewing the evidence from the state attorney general’s investigation, will issue a recommendation on whether the legislature should proceed with impeaching Governor Cuomo within “several weeks,” Committee Chair Charles Lavine said on Monday.
Lavine, chair of the state assembly’s judiciary committee, said on Monday that the committee would hold two executive sessions to discuss its ongoing impeachment inquiry of Cuomo on August 16 and August 23, followed by at least two public hearings, where experts will be called to testify on sexual assault and harassment and the impeachment process itself.
The Committee will recommend whether to impeach Cuomo after fully reviewing the evidence, he said.
“We anticipate that this process will be concluded very soon … and when I say very soon I’m speaking about several weeks,” Lavine told reporters.
Lavine defended the process’ length, saying that lawmakers “owe it to the people in the state of New York” to examine the evidence in the attorney general’s report before moving to impeach.
Support for Cuomo seems to be slipping at a faster pace. On Sunday, a top aide to Cuomo resigned in the wake of the reported allegations.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (pronounced Haystie) reiterated on Monday that most members of the Democratic-led body have “no confidence in the ability of the governor to remain in office.”
Cuomo has denied any wrongdoing, though he has acknowledged that his efforts to be affectionate with people he encounters may have made some people uncomfortable.
(Production: Angela Moore, Dan Fastenberg, Andrew Hofstetter)