The damning report from New York’s attorney general, concluding that Andrew Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women, also shed some light on the role that his brother, CNN host Chris Cuomo, played in advising him on responding to the allegations.
The report from Attorney General Letitia James indicated that Chris Cuomo testified as part of the investigation. An appendix to the report includes a Feb. 28 email from Chris Cuomo with a suggested statement that his brother should make in response to the claims.
Chris Cuomo had apologized on air in May after it was initially revealed that he participated in strategy sessions with the governor and staffers to talk about how to respond to the harassment claims.
He was among the outside advisers who counseled the governor to show contrition after one of his accusers, Charlotte Bennett, his former executive assistant and health policy adviser, came forward with her allegations.
“During his testimony, Chris Cuomo explained that there was discussion about remedial measures the Chamber [governor’s office] should take in light of the sexual harassment allegations, but some people had taken the position that ‘they should just wait,'” according to the report.
Do not overlook the Cuomo report appendix, which includes Charlotte Bennett's texts about her Cuomo interactions and this email from Chris Cuomo appearing to draft a statement for his brother https://t.co/uN17cZRbNJ pic.twitter.com/etUCrQbWTX
— Shane Goldmacher (@ShaneGoldmacher) August 3, 2021
The report concluded that it was “revealing and consistent with the Executive Chamber’s overall approach that, when faced with allegations of sexual harassment brought against the Governor, the inner circle of confidantes brought in to control and direct the response included a number of individuals with no official role in the Executive Chamber.”
A CNN spokesperson pointed to Chris Cuomo’s previous comments. The network said in May, “Chris has not been involved in CNN’s extensive coverage of the allegations against Governor Cuomo — on air or behind the scenes. In part because, as he has said on his show, he could never be objective. But also because he often serves as a sounding board for his brother. However, it was inappropriate to engage in conversations that included members of the Governor’s staff, which Chris acknowledges. He will not participate in such conversations going forward.”