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Chris Cuomo Ignores Andrew Cuomo Report That Found He Was Advising Brother

Newsweek logo Newsweek 8/4/2021 James Crump
Andrew Cuomo, Chris Cuomo are posing for a picture: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Chris Cuomo attend the HBO Documentary Film "RX: Early Detection A Cancer Journey With Sandra Lee" during The Tribeca Film Festival at SVA Theater on April 26, 2018 in New York City. CNN anchor Chris Cuomo stayed silent on the controversy surrounding his brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, after an investigation accused him of sexually harassing 11 women and revealed that he was helped by the TV host in drafting a response when the allegations first surfaced. © Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for HBO New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and Chris Cuomo attend the HBO Documentary Film "RX: Early Detection A Cancer Journey With Sandra Lee" during The Tribeca Film Festival at SVA Theater on April 26, 2018 in New York City. CNN anchor Chris Cuomo stayed silent on the controversy surrounding his brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, after an investigation accused him of sexually harassing 11 women and revealed that he was helped by the TV host in drafting a response when the allegations first surfaced.

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo has stayed silent on the controversy surrounding his brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, after an investigation accused the politician of sexually harassing 11 women, and revealed that he was helped by his TV host brother in drafting a response when the allegations first surfaced.

On Tuesday afternoon, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced that an investigation found that the governor violated several federal and state laws and created a hostile work environment by allegedly sexually harassing 11 current and former employees.

"The independent investigation found Governor Andrew Cuomo harassed multiple women," James said at a press conference on Tuesday, before adding that the investigation "has revealed conduct that corrodes the very fabric and character of our state government and shines light on injustice that can be present at the highest levels of government."

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Shortly after the press conference, Andrew Cuomo released a video denying the claims, stating that he never touched anyone inappropriately or made sexual advances, but several prominent Democrats, including President Joe Biden, have called for him to resign from his role.

In addition to the claims made against the New York governor in the report, Chris Cuomo was also named as the investigation revealed that he helped draft a response to the initial allegations of sexual harassment against his brother on February 28.

The revelation about the CNN anchor in the investigation followed on from a report by The Washington Post earlier in the year that claimed Chris Cuomo joined a conference call with his brother and aides to urge him to not step down amid the several allegations.

In a statement shared with Newsweek in May, CNN confirmed that while Chris Cuomo has not covered the allegations his brother is facing, he has participated in strategy calls with the governor's staff about how to respond to the claims of sexual misconduct.

When the allegations first surfaced against the governor, his brother said that he "obviously" was not able to cover him on air and Chris Cuomo continued with that policy on Tuesday night during his show, Cuomo Prime Time.

He did not mention the report or the allegations against him and his brother during his show on Tuesday and instead told viewers that "we're focused on COVID here," as he put his attention on Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the record breaking COVID figures currently being reported in the state.


Video: CNN’s Chris Cuomo apologizes over advising his brother Gov. Andrew Cuomo (NBC News)

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Despite the CNN host's claims that he cannot cover his brother, he invited him on to his show several times in 2020 to discuss New York's handling of the COVID pandemic.

Immediately following Chris Cuomo's show on Tuesday, CNN host Don Lemon kicked off his program by addressing the scandal, as The Los Angeles Times reported that fellow CNN shows Erin Burnett Outfront and Anderson Cooper 360 spent 22 and 26 minutes discussing the report respectively.

After James revealed the findings of the investigation on Tuesday, Andrew Cuomo released a video denying the claims, saying: "I never touched anyone inappropriately or made inappropriate sexual advances."

As he was speaking, photos of him affectionately touching people were shown while he said: "I do it with everyone—black and white, young and old, straight and LGBTQ, powerful people, friends, strangers, people who I meet on the street."

He also then released a separate 85-page document that included photos of Biden and other officials hugging people as he indicated that he has no plans to step down from his role.

However, a chorus of Democrats, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and members of the New York Congressional delegation, have called for the governor's resignation.

"Yes," Biden told reporters on Tuesday when asked whether Andrew Cuomo should step down. "I'm sure some embraces were totally innocent, but apparently the attorney general decided some weren't."

While White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki added: "I don't know that anyone could have watched this morning and not found the allegations to be abhorrent. I know I certainly did."

Newsweek has contacted CNN and Chris Cuomo's representatives for comment.

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