New York lawmakers to review Cuomo impeachment report draft

Members of the New York State Assembly who oversaw an impeachment investigation into then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo will meet next week to review a report drafted by outside lawyers for the inquiry.

Assemblymember Charles Lavine, D-Glen Cove, announced earlier this week members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee have been invited to Albany to review the report written by Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP.

“The investigation included interviews with 165 witnesses, along with the review of hundreds of thousands of documents, recordings, messages, memos, transcripts and other materials,” Lavine, the committee’s chairman, said Wednesday in a statement.

Lavine issued the statement hours after Attorney General Letitia James announced the release of several transcripts from the independent investigation she oversaw regarding sexual harassment allegations against the former governor.

That independent investigation into Cuomo began in March. James released her 168-page report in August that supported claims from 11 women, including several who worked for Cuomo, who said he made unwelcome advances and touched some inappropriately.

While Cuomo denied the allegations, he ultimately resigned later that month to avoid having a likely impeachment hearing in the State Senate become a lengthy distraction.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie ordered the Judiciary Committee to begin an impeachment investigation in March, roughly a week after the independent investigation into sexual harassment claims started.

The impeachment inquiry looked into claims other than the harassment allegations, including claims the Cuomo administration withheld and misreported information about COVID-19 deaths and a $5 million deal he received to write a book about his handling of the COVID-19 crisis.

Less than a week after Cuomo announced he would resign, Heastie announced the impeachment inquiry would be dropped. After that move was criticized by both Democratic and Republican lawmakers, it was announced the Judiciary Committee would release a report on its findings.

Cuomo faces other investigations as well, both from James’ office and from federal investigators. He also faces a charge of forcible touching in Albany that was filed by the Albany County Sheriff’s Department in the wake of an allegation made by a former Cuomo aide, who claimed he groped her in the Executive Mansion.

The arraignment in that case is scheduled for January.

This article was originally posted on New York lawmakers to review Cuomo impeachment report draft

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