By Donnnie Antoine
This past Wednesday, March 5, Governor Andrew Cuomo was accused of sexual harassment by his former aide, Lindsey Boylan. She initially accused Cuomo back in December of 2020, however she decided not to go into details on the matter until now. Boylan revealed on the website “Medium” the misconduct she received while working under Governor Cuomo. The first alleged incident took place in October 2017 during a flight on Cuomo’s official state jet where Governor Cuomo suggested that they play strip poker.
In another incident, which happened in 2018, Lindsey Boylan claims that while she met with Governor Cuomo in a one-on-one meeting in his Manhattan office he kissed her on the lips without warning as she was on her way out. Boylan has also claimed that Governor Cuomo has gone out of his way to touch her on her lower back, arms, and legs. Cuomo has since denied the alleged claims saying that it is “just not true.”
Following Linsey Boylan’s claims against Governor Cuomo, several people have decided to support her and are calling for an official probe against Cuomo, including actress and #MeToo activist Rose McGowan. McGowan on the matter at hand exclaimed to Fox News on Thursday February 25, “I completely stand by Lindsey Boylan. Its truth leaks from every word on the screen that she wrote. She, none of us, should endure what she endured.” McGowan however is not the only celebrity who has decided to support Boylan, as the TIME’S UP foundation has also called for an official investigation on the issue. These members include actress Ashley Judd, who in early 2019 accused Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, as well as actress Eva Longoria.
Governor Cuomo does not stand alone however as his press secretary Caitlin Girouard has decided to vouch for him. According to the New York Post, Girouard exclaimed that “Ms. Boylan’s claims of inappropriate behavior are quite simply false.” Girouard also claimed that while Ms. Boylan was a passenger on the October 2017 flight with Cuomo so were John Maggiore, Howard Zemsky, Dani Lever and Abbey Fashouer Collins, all current or former aides of Cuomo. Girouard then released a joint statement from the group which stated, “We were on each of these October flights and this conversation did not happen,”.
In the midst of these allegations, it appears that the leading female Democratic politicians have decided to remain silent on the matter for the time being. These women consist of New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Vice President Kamala Harris, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and former New York senator Hillary Clinton. Although having a “zero tolerance” policy, which helped in the resignation of Democrat Al Franken in 2017, these women chose not to weigh in on the matter according to inquiries from The New York Post.
Additionally, a second former aide, Charlotte Bennett, has accused him of sexual harassment as well as a third woman named Anna Ruch, who says that Cuomo made an unwanted advance at a wedding in 2019. With these most recent allegations, New York State lawmakers voted to rescind and limit Governor Andrew Cuomo of his emergency pandemic powers. This, coming also at a time when the governor is also under close scrutiny with the Attorney General Leticia James for his handling of nursing care facility deaths during the pandemic.