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Monday, April 12, 2021

Opinion | Can Andrew Cuomo Proceed to Lead?

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Few political households have had extra of an affect on New York politics than the Cuomos. Father and firstborn son each had public service woven deep of their DNA, and each developed a repute for toughness in service of the frequent good and their very own political ambitions.

Once we endorsed Andrew Cuomo for one more time period as governor in 2018, we famous that he was “strategic and at instances bullying in his use of energy, pushed and maddeningly evasive.” Supporters and critics, we wrote, agree that Mr. Cuomo is “a formidable political animal.”

There’s a lot Mr. Cuomo will be pleased with. The governor used his appreciable political skills to nice impact. He persuaded the State Legislature to legalize same-sex marriage, cross sturdy gun-control laws and lift the minimal wage, and he noticed New York by means of a number of crises, from Superstorm Sandy in 2012 to the coronavirus pandemic. Few individuals perceive easy methods to make authorities work as Mr. Cuomo does.

However those self same traits translated right into a ruthlessness and energy that Mr. Cuomo failed to manage. A number of feminine staffers have come ahead with accounts of sexual misconduct and harassment. These allegations are below investigation by New York Lawyer Normal Letitia James and the State Meeting. Mr. Cuomo says he’s assured that investigations will clear his identify.

Undergirding these particular accusations is the widespread description of his administration by many former aides as a poisonous office through which Mr. Cuomo and others dominated by worry and emotional abuse — and drew ladies whom Mr. Cuomo noticed as engaging nearer into his orbit, actively encouraging them to put on heels and costume in tightfitting clothes each time he was round. In New York politics, Mr. Cuomo’s bullying model was an open secret. However the public caught solely a glimpse of the hazards of Mr. Cuomo’s habits not too long ago.

It’s all the time preferable to let official investigations run their course, to ascertain proof from accusation. If crimes had been dedicated, they need to be pretty adjudicated. However the query of the governor’s continued health for workplace is about greater than a felony matter, with totally different requirements.

The fact is that Mr. Cuomo has now misplaced the assist of his social gathering and his governing companions. The Democrats who management the State Legislature seem prepared to question him, to say nothing of the Republicans. New York’s congressional delegation and metropolis leaders, key to his base, have referred to as on him to resign.

Voters, who returned him simply to workplace, won’t have their say till the following election, ought to he resolve to run for re-election.

The governor has jeopardized the general public’s belief on the worst potential second. The state is going through the onerous and pressing process of vaccinating hundreds of thousands of individuals and recovering from a pandemic that has killed almost 50,000 of its residents, sickened a whole bunch of 1000’s extra and devastated the economic system.

Mr. Cuomo, unsurprisingly to anybody who is aware of him, dismissed calls to step down and railed in opposition to what he referred to as “cancel tradition.” Requested whether or not he had a consensual relationship with any of the ladies who’ve come ahead, Mr. Cuomo dodged: “I’ve not had a sexual relationship that was inappropriate. Interval.”

What the governor failed to understand throughout his information convention on Friday was that he owes the general public a much more sturdy clarification for the slew of credible harassment complaints in opposition to him, in addition to an articulation of why the general public ought to give him their belief.

At this level, it’s onerous to see how Mr. Cuomo can proceed to do the general public’s vital enterprise with out political allies or public confidence.

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