The State Assembly committee’s investigation into Governor Andrew Cuomo is “nearing completion,” and Albany lawmakers will “soon” consider impeaching the scandal-ridden governor, lawyers said in a statement Thursday.
“We write to inform you that the Committee’s investigation is nearing completion and the Assembly will soon consider potential articles of impeachment against your client. Accordingly, we invite you to provide any additional evidence or written submissions that you would like the Committee to consider before its work concludes,” reads an Aug. 5 missive by the Assembly Judiciary Committee’s legal counsel Davis Polk and Wardwell to Cuomo’s attorneys.
The lawyers gave the governor’s legal team a deadline to submit evidence and written statements by Aug. 13, at 5 p.m.
The committee is conducting its own probe into the governor’s misconduct, separate from the explosive report the State Attorney General Letitia James released Tuesday, detailing sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo by 11 women.
The legislative probe is headed up by Assembly Member Charles Lavine (D–Long Island) and has been looking into the sexual harassment claims, as well as nursing home deaths, whether Cuomo used state resources to write his $5.1 million memoir about the pandemic, and safety issues with the rebuilt Tappan Zee Bridge he named after his late father.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D–Bronx) has said Cuomo can no longer stay in office and the lower chamber can draw up articles of impeachment.
If the Assembly approves an impeachment resolution, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul would become acting governor while the trial is ongoing in the so-called High Court of Impeachment, which is mostly made up of state senators.
The Senate by law has to wait at least 30 before starting official impeachment proceedings in Albany.
A majority of the Assembly’s 150 members are reportedly in favor of impeaching the third-term governor if he doesn’t resign first.
After James released her damning report — which alleges Cuomo groped, kissed, and made inappropriate or suggestive comments to female staffers, state employees, and members of the public — Cuomo disputed the accusations in a video statement, before he and his communications team went dark all of Wednesday.
The AG’s report also found a “toxic” work environment where Cuomo’s inner circle of advisors enabled his behavior and unlawfully retaliated against his first public accuser, Lindsey Boylan.
A spokesman for Cuomo did not immediately respond to a request for comment for this story.
High-ranking Democrats and longtime allies of Cuomo called on him to step down, including President Joe Biden and State Democratic Committee chairperson Jay Jacobs.
Five prosecutors across the Empire State have already announced they are investigating claims from James’s report, including district attorneys from Albany, Manhattan, Westchester, Nassau, and Oswego counties.
Boylan’s lawyer told the New York Times on Wednesday she plans to sue the governor and his team for their retaliation against her.