Questions linger for Andrew Cuomo's future after governor resigns amid scandals

WABC logo
Wednesday, August 11, 2021
Questions linger for Cuomo's future after resignation amid scandals
Cuomo could face civil lawsuits or even criminal charges related to the alleged harassment, and some lawmakers are still pushing for impeachment.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- After months of holding on to power amid sexual harassment allegations and accusations of a coverup regarding nursing home deaths, New York Govenor Andrew Cuomo abruptly resigned Tuesday.

But questions remain about what Cuomo is facing even after he leaves office in 14 days. He could face civil lawsuits or even criminal charges related to the alleged harassment, and some lawmakers are still pushing for impeachment proceedings they say are the only way to hold Cuomo truly accountable.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie says the judiciary committee's investigation will be wrapped up in a matter of weeks, releasing a timeline that could include public hearings into the matter.

Lawmakers are also looking into Cuomo's $5 million book deal.

"Governor Cuomo will have numerous opportunities to be heard, including the opportunity to submit any and all written materials that he would like the committee to consider," Judiciary Committee Chair Charles Lavine said. "We expect to receive them by Friday to supplement any materials the governor has already produced.:

WATCH | The Countdown: Bill Ritter, guests break down Cuomo resignation

What's next following Governor Cuomo's resignation? Bill Ritter and political guests have a breakdown.

Cuomo has denied the most serious allegations against him and acknowledged Tuesday that his "instinct is to fight," but he said the impeachment process would take months and consume resources that should go toward "managing COVID, guarding against the delta variant, reopening upstate, fighting gun violence and saving New York City."

Prosecutors in Albany, Westchester County, and on Long Island have already said their investigations into whether Cuomo committed any crimes will continue. Cuomo might be hoping that prosecutors or the women who complained about his behavior might lose interest in pursuing a case now that he's leaving office.

The women who have accused Cuomo could still file lawsuits, and at least one - Lindsey Boylan - has said she will.

It's currently unclear whether the state Assembly can -- or will -- continue the probe and draw up articles of impeachment once he's out of office. And lawmakers already said the process would take weeks, making it unlikely it would wrap up in Cuomo's last two weeks in office.

Cuomo "deeply, deeply" apologized to the "11 women who I truly offended," but he continued to deny the most serious allegations outlined in the report and again blamed the allegations as misunderstandings attributed to "generational and cultural differences."

Cuomo's full statement:

Complete: NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo's full statement announcing his resignation amid sexual misconduct allegations.

Last week, he personally said he was sorry to two accusers, ex-aide Charlotte Bennett and a wedding guest he was photographed kissing, Anna Ruch.

On Tuesday, he added the unnamed New York State Police trooper who said he inappropriately touched her to the list.

Cuomo could still run again for governor in 2022, and although his donations dipped in the wake of the initial allegations, he had amassed an $18 million war chest as of mid-July.

Cuomo's favorability rating over the years:

If he were to be impeached somehow, however, he could be barred from seeking statewide office again.

Cuomo would have been up for a fourth term next year, and though no high-profile Democrats have declared their candidacy yet, U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin and Andrew Giuliani are among the Republican contenders.

It's unclear how engaged Cuomo will be in public policy in his final days, but the state is dealing with a soaring number of COVID-19 cases and has been struggling to get aid to tenants who fell behind on rent because of the pandemic.

Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, a 62-year-old Democrat and former member of Congress from the Buffalo area, will become the state's 57th governor and the first woman to hold the post.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)


More Cuomo Coverage

RELATED | Full details of 11 complaints against Gov. Andrew Cuomo, according to AG report

Raw Video: Attorneys Joon Kim and Anne Clark detail some of the allegations the investigated against Gov. Cuomo.

Cuomo released a pre-recorded statement saying that he never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances.

NY Gov. Cuomo responds to AG report on sexual harassment


* Get Eyewitness News Delivered

* Follow us on YouTube

* More local news

* Send us a news tip

* Download the abc7NY app for breaking news alerts Submit a News Tip