Things just got even worse for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) as two more women have accused him of sexual misconduct.
One of the women is Ana Liss, who worked as a policy aide to Cuomo from 2013 to 2015. She claimed that Cuomo’s harassment of her was so bad that she felt reduced to “just a skirt.” Liss claimed that Cuomo “asked her if she had a boyfriend, called her sweetheart, touched her on her lower back at a reception and once kissed her hand when she rose from her desk,” according to The Wall Street Journal.
Liss claimed that on May 6, 2014, she was working at reception at the Executive Mansion in Albany, which is Cuomo’s official residence. She alleged that Cuomo was in a living room on the north side of the mansion’s first floor when he noticed her, and that he proceeded to come over to her and say “hey, Sweetheart!'” Liss claimed that Cuomo hugged her, kissed her on both cheeks and then wrapped his arm around her lower back and grabbed her waist. The two of them then turned to a photographer, who took a picture that shows Cuomo’s hand around her waist.
Liss said that she decided to come forward after seeing the allegations against Cuomo that other women were making.
The second new woman to come forward is Karen Hinton, who told the Washington Post that she endured a “very long, too long, too tight, too intimate” embrace from Cuomo in a dimly lit Los Angeles hotel room back in December of 2000. Hinton, who is married, pulled away, but she claimed “he pulls me back for another intimate embrace. I thought at that moment it could lead to a kiss, it could lead to other things, so I just pull away again, and I leave.”
Rich Azzopardi, a senior adviser to Cuomo, responded to Liss’s allegations by saying, “Reporters and photographers have covered the governor for 14 years watching him kiss men and women and posing for pictures. At the public open-house mansion reception, there are hundreds of people, and he poses for hundreds of pictures. That’s what people in politics do.”
Peter Ajemian, communication’s director for Cuomo, denied the claims against the governor that were made by Hinton, going so far as to personally attack her.
“This did not happen,” Ajemian told the New York Post. “Karen Hinton is a known antagonist of the Governor’s who is attempting to take advantage of this moment to score cheap points with made up allegations from 21 years ago. All women have the right to come forward and tell their story — however, it’s also the responsibility of the press to consider self-motivation. This is reckless.”
At the time of this writing, Cuomo has refused to resign despite bipartisan calls for him to do so.