N.Y. Panel Probing Cuomo Amasses Trove of 100,000 Documents
(Bloomberg) -- New York lawmakers considering whether to begin impeachment proceedings for Governor Andrew Cuomo have collected more than 100,000 pages of documents, including emails, texts, letter documents, photographs, contracts and transcripts.
A law firm working for the Assembly’s Judiciary Committee, which is probing accusations of sexual harassment and abuse of his office, continues to gather “substantive evidence,” Chairman Charles Lavine said in a Wednesday meeting that lasted five minutes before entering executive session.
“I am very pleased with the continued progress of the investigation,” Lavine said. “The purpose of this process is to both gather substantive evidence, as well as to assess the credibility and corroborate information learned during interviews.”
Lavine did not address accusations that the impeachment committee is dragging out the probe to benefit Cuomo politically. Cuomo this month signed into law a measure needed to ensure the legislature had enough money to pay for the probe weighing his possible impeachment.
Cuomo is facing federal and state investigations into sexual harassment allegations from current and former aides, as well as claims that his administration covered up Covid-19 nursing-home deaths, provided relatives with virus testing before it was widely available, mishandled construction of the Mario Cuomo Bridge across the Hudson River and misused public resources to write a $5 million book on his Covid leadership.
Cuomo denies all the claims and has refused to step down.
This is the fifth meeting of the Assembly committee investigating the claims. It last met in late May, providing a five-minute public update before entering private executive session.
The public portion gave little insight into the progress of the investigation, or when the Davis Polk & Wardwell law firm might conclude its work. Lavine said he would provide an update later Wednesday.
State lawmakers and government watchdogs have said they were concerned the inquiry into the governor was dragging on and might allow him to evade political consequences.
State Attorney General Letitia James is investigating many of the same claims. Her probe isn’t expected to end until at least the end of summer, though she has entered the formal interview phase and has interviewed many of the accusers. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Rich Azzopardi, one of Cuomo’s top aides, was interviewed by James’s team.
Cuomo so far appears to have weathered many of the allegations. The governor held a fundraiser Tuesday night in Manhattan with the price tag of $10,000 per head. More than 170 people were in attendance.
He has yet to state whether he will continue to seek a fourth term as governor of New York, something that before the allegations surfaced against him he said he would do. A poll released last month by Siena College found 37% of respondents would vote for him if he ran again.
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