State Attorney General Letitia James’ office is “reviewing” a request from state lawmakers to investigate claims of sexual misconduct against Governor Andrew Cuomo as written about by former attaché Lindsey Boylan, amNewYork Metro has learned.
The new information coming forth on Thursday from the AG’s office was prompted by a letter asking the James to weigh in and also comes as Empire State Development Chair Steven Cohen took questions on the matter from reporters in defense of the Governor Cuomo.
“It’s my understanding that Lindsay Boylan left long before I took on the role as chair and, you know, responsible share of any board or entity, obviously, you take criticism you take complaint seriously,” Cohen said, “but I believe and I am happy to look into it, I believe that there was an inquiry with respect to Lindsey Boylan. And and I think it would be inappropriate for me to comment in this venue on that any further.”
Boylan accused Cuomo of making comments on her appearance, good or bad depending on her performance in her work as former Chief of Staff for ESD. In a Medium post on Wednesday, she charged that he suggested he play a game of strip poker on a flight in October 2017.
Cuomo administration officials who were present on the two October flights where Boylan was on the manifest have denied the conversation took place. Caitlin Girouard a spokesperson for the governor said: “As we said before, Ms. Boylan’s claims of inappropriate behavior are quite simply false.”
As the controversy gained momentum, elected officials such as state Senator Liz Krueger of Manhattan calling for the passage of one of her own bills that creates an independent investigative apparatus that is free of influence from the the governor, claiming a lack of resources for the state in this regard.
“All credible allegations of sexual harassment must be taken seriously and given a thorough, transparent and independent investigation. Unfortunately, the most obvious body to undertake such an investigation — JCOPE — is compromised and ineffective. I have proposed what I believe to be the most effective, long-term solution: passage of my constitutional amendment to create an independent investigative body for these purposes. Absent that, we may be forced to depend on JCOPE, where the governor’s appointees will need to be excluded from voting against an investigation.”
Whether or not James plans a full investigation into the governor’s conduct is not clear at this time. Check back with amNY.com for updates.
Earlier on Thursday, Mayor Bill de Blasio called for an independent investigation into Boylan’s claims.