Amid rising sexual harassment allegations following a damning report from New York Attorney General Letitia James, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo indicated he will be stepping down by Aug. 24, he announced Tuesday at a press conference.
Cuomo said he is resigning because he wants to “let government get back to governing,” instead of “wasting energy on distractions,” he said referring to the claims of at least 11 women who accused him of sexual harassment.
The Democrat governor stated his resignation comes as he attempts to prevent and null impeachment trials from taking place, as these would “consume government, cost taxpayers millions of dollars” and would “brutalize people.”
Earlier in the press conference, Cuomo confirmed some culpability by stating “If she says I did it, I believe her,” regarding one of his accusers.
“I take full responsibility for my actions. I have been too familiar with people. My sense of humor can be insensitive and off-putting. I do hug and kiss people casually, women and men. I have done it all my life. It’s who I’ve been since I can remember,” Cuomo said.
“This transition must be seamless; we have a lot going on”, Cuomo said. “But she can come up to speed quickly” he referred to Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul who will succeed him as governor of New York.
According to Hochul, Cuomo’s resignation is “the right thing to do.”
“As someone who has served at all levels of government and is next in the line of succession, I am prepared to lead as New York State’s 57th governor,” she confirmed in a statement.
Cuomo has faced several sexual harassment allegations over the past couple of months only to be confirmed by the attorney general’s scathing report last week, which Hochul called “repulsive.”
The governor created a “hostile work environment” in which women that worked for or around him felt “unsafe,” said the report.
Hochul will replace Cuomo by Aug. 24 when his resignation takes effect.