On Sunday night, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that he was “truly sorry” if “some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation,” as he looked to rebut claims by two former aides that say they were sexually harassed by him.
“To be clear I never inappropriately touched anybody and I never propositioned anybody and I never intended to make anyone feel uncomfortable,” Cuomo said in a statement released by his office, adding he had teased people about their personal lives in an attempt to be “playful.”
“I now understand that my interactions may have been insensitive or too personal and that some of my comments, given my position, made others feel in ways I never intended. I acknowledge some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation. To the extent anyone felt that way, I am truly sorry about that,” he said.
Cuomo claimed innocence after asking the New York state’s attorney general and chief judge to conduct an independent investigation into the allegations of sexual harassment against him.
Breitbart News reports that one of Cuomo’s aides, Charlotte Bennett, claimed that the Governor made several inappropriate comments about her sex life.
Bennet claims Cuomo asked her inappropriate questions about her sex knife in his State Capitol office in June.
Last week in a post on Medium, Lindsey Boylan, a deputy secretary for economic development and special adviser to Cuomo from 2015 to 2018, said the governor “sexually harassed me for years”.
Cuomo looked for Attorney General Letitia James to control the inquiry.
James said she expected to receive an official referral that would give her subpoena power and allow her to establish an outside law firm for “a rigorous and independent investigation.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki, said on CNN’s State of the Union; “There should be an independent review of these allegations. They’re serious. It was hard to read that story as a woman. And that process should move forward as quickly as possible and that’s something we all support and the president supports.”
She added that Joe Biden believes Bennett and Boylan “should be treated with respect and dignity.”
UPI, AP contributed to this story