- Title: Impeachment decision about Cuomo could be made 'very soon' - says NY lawmaker
- Date: 9th August 2021
- Summary: ALBANY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES (AUGUST 9, 2021) (REUTERS) NEW YORK ASSEMBLY SPEAKER CARL HEASTIE WALKING TO MICROPHONE (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK ASSEMBLY SPEAKER, CARL HEASTIE, SAYING: "Now, with the attorney general's task completed, the assembly is working to expeditiously conclude our investigation, which covers a broad range of issues so that we can bring this sad chapter of our state's history to a conclusion. As I stated last week, the governor has clearly lost the confidence of the majority members of the New York State Assembly. The attorney general's report lays out in painful detail the many instances in ways in which he reportedly harassed and created a hostile work environment for the employees of the executive chamber and others he came in contact with." NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY'S JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIR CHARLES LAVINE TALKING WHILE STANDING NEXT TO HEASTIE (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY'S JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIR, CHARLES LAVINE, SAYING: "Next, we expect to hold public hearings after August the 23rd to present testimony from independent experts on key subject matters related to the impeachment inquiry. We expect to invite an expert to testify on sexual assault and harassment. And we expect to invite another expert to address the impeachment process itself under the New York State Constitution. After the committee has completed its review of the evidence, it will make a recommendation to the full assembly on whether to proceed with impeachment against Governor Cuomo. We anticipate that this process will be concluded very soon. Next. And when I say very soon, I'm speaking about several weeks." LAVINE AND HEASTIE STANDING (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY'S JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIR, CHARLES LAVINE, SAYING: "If we are going to present a case, assuming there is a trial of the impeachment in the court of impeachment, I think we owe it to the people of the state of New York to make sure that we fully examine the underlying evidence in the attorney general's report and that we do our best to to make sure that it correlates or interfaces with our evidence. That's basic trial. It's basic trial strategy." LAVINE TALKING (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY'S JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIR, CHARLES LAVINE, SAYING: "I'm fully confident, thank you, that should the committee vote to pursue impeachment, the articles of impeachment will be airtight." LAVINE AND HEASTIE STANDING LAVINE TALKING TO JOURNALIST (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY'S JUDICIARY COMMITTEE CHAIR, CHARLES LAVINE, SAYING: "I understand there are some people who want impeachment voted on now to remove him from office. And I understand that, however, if we are not in a position to present our best case, he could very well win in the court of impeachment. And for everyone who's concerned about him being in office now, if he wins and he returns to office unfettered, that is another danger. So it's a matter of the balance." NEW YORK ASSEMBLYMAN DAVID WEPRIN TALKING TO MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK ASSEMBLYMAN, DAVID WEPRIN, SAYING: "And we want to make sure that you know, that before we bring articles of impeachment, that there is, you know, enough feeling among all the members that this rises to the level of impeachment. And what we've seen so far, it does seem very serious." (SOUNDBITE) (English) NEW YORK ASSEMBLYWOMAN, LATRICE WALKER, SAYING: "There are 21 members of the Judiciary Committee and 20 of them, I believe, are attorneys. And so this has been a fruitful discussion. It has been an enlightening one." WALKER TALKING TO MEDIA
- Embargoed: 23rd August 2021 21:53
- Keywords: Andrew Cuomo Carl Heastie Charles Lavine New York State Assembly New York governor sexual harassment
- Location: ALBANY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES
- City: ALBANY, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES
- Country: USA
- Topics: Government/Politics,United States
- Reuters ID: LVA001EPK71ON
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:The New York State Assembly's Judiciary Committee met to address impeachment proceedings against Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday (August 9).
This was the first meeting of the judiciary committee since Attorney General Letitia James detailed the results of her investigation into sexual misconduct claims made against the governor.
The report found that Cuomo groped, kissed or made suggestive comments to 11 women in violation of the law, prompting local prosecutors to launch a criminal investigation and re-igniting calls for him to resign or be impeached.
In addition to the attorney general's report, the state legislature has been conducting its own inquiry into Cuomo's actions and could decide to impeach him.
The New York State Assembly's Judiciary Committee, which is reviewing the evidence from the state attorney general's investigation, will issue a recommendation on whether the legislature should proceed with impeaching Governor Cuomo within "several weeks," Committee Chair Charles Lavine said on Monday.
Lavine, chair of the state assembly's judiciary committee, said on Monday that the committee would hold two executive sessions to discuss its ongoing impeachment inquiry of Cuomo on August 16 and August 23, followed by at least two public hearings, where experts will be called to testify on sexual assault and harassment and the impeachment process itself.
The Committee will recommend whether to impeach Cuomo after fully reviewing the evidence, he said.
"We anticipate that this process will be concluded very soon ... and when I say very soon I'm speaking about several weeks," Lavine told reporters.
Lavine defended the process' length, saying that lawmakers "owe it to the people in the state of New York" to examine the evidence in the attorney general's report before moving to impeach.
Support for Cuomo seems to be slipping at a faster pace. On Sunday, a top aide to Cuomo resigned in the wake of the reported allegations.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (pronounced Haystie) reiterated on Monday that most members of the Democratic-led body have "no confidence in the ability of the governor to remain in office."
Cuomo has denied any wrongdoing, though he has acknowledged that his efforts to be affectionate with people he encounters may have made some people uncomfortable.
(Production: Angela Moore, Dan Fastenberg, Andrew Hofstetter)
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