A third woman said New York Governor Cuomo had made unwanted advances on her.
The Governor Andrew Cuomo controversy has even got some Democrats calling for his resignation.
Anna Ruch told the New York Times that she met Cuomo at a wedding in September 2019. The governor reportedly put a hand on her bare lower back and called it “aggressive” when she removed it. Ruch said Cuomo then put his hands on her face and asked if he could kiss her.
Anna Ruch, now 33, met Cuomo at a wedding reception in New York City in September 2019 after giving a toast, she said in an interview with the New York Times published Monday night.
After 15 years in local politics in the Buffalo area, Hochul was elected to Congress and won a special election in 2011 while getting along well with Republican voters. Cuomo elected her lieutenant governor in 2014 and hit back a major challenge facing progressive Jumaane Williams in 2018. In an interview on Monday, she stated that Cuomo put his hand on her bare lower back.
“I was so confused and shocked and embarrassed,” Ruch told the Times.
Governor Cuomo’s office did not respond to a request for comment at the time of the first accusation.
The Times said a friend of Ruch’s who heard the exchange confirmed the story. Simultaneous text messages and photos from the event also confirmed Ruch’s report.
Two former employees have also accused Cuomo of making undesirable sexual advances.
Last week, two former Cuomo aides accused him of sexual harassment – something he has denied.
On Friday, Lindsey Boylan, a former employee, alleged that Cuomo made unwanted sexual advances towards her from 2016 onwards. In a Medium blog post, Boylan said she resigned in 2018 after the governor kissed her on the lips without her consent.
On Saturday, another former employee, Charlotte Bennett, said Cuomo asked her inappropriate questions and also made undesirable sexual advances towards her.
The Times published its interview with Ruch hours after Charlotte Bennett, a former Cuomo adviser who also accused him of harassment, released a statement alleging that he “refused to acknowledge his predatory behavior or accept responsibility for it take”.
In an interview with The Times, Bennett alleged that the governor made comments indicating that he “wanted to sleep with [her]” and added that she felt “terribly uncomfortable and scared”.
Another former aide, Lindsey Boylan, has accused Cuomo of sexually molesting and kissing her without her consent.
“These grave allegations of sexual harassment are deeply worrying. I think the question everyone will be asking is, ‘What does she know?’ ”Said GOP consultant Jessica Proud.
For his part, Hochul published a 16-word statement that reads: “Everyone deserves their voice to be heard and taken seriously. I support an independent review. ”
Cuomo has denied both allegations. In a statement released on Sunday, Cuomo said his behavior towards women was “misunderstood as undesirable flirtation”.
BREAKING: Andrew Cuomo issues a new statement.
“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.” pic.twitter.com/Nxg0HLHDfL
— Jon Campbell (@JonCampbellGAN) February 28, 2021
“To the extent that someone felt that way, I really feel sorry for it,” he said, adding that he never touched or suggested anyone inappropriately.
On Sunday, Cuomo said he was “really sorry” for making comments in the past that were “misunderstood as undesirable flirtation” but that he “never touched anyone inappropriately, and I never suggested anyone and never intended got to make someone feel uncomfortable.”
BREAKING: In wake of mounting backlash, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announces independent review to be launched into sexual harassment allegations against him. He has denied the allegations. https://t.co/PDo3tR8AZB
— ABC News (@ABC) February 28, 2021
Cuomo also agreed on Sunday for New York Attorney General Letitia James to oversee an independent investigation into the allegations. The decision came after state and federal lawmakers criticized an earlier plan to appoint Janet DiFiore, New York’s Supreme Court Justice, along with James to “jointly appoint an independent and qualified lawyer in private practice with no political affiliation select to have a thorough examination of the matter and publish a public report. ”
New York attorney general Letitia James confirmed Monday that her office will investigate the allegations. Governor Cuomo said on Sunday he supported the investigation.