When New York Assemblyman Ron Kim accused Gov. Andrew Cuomo of bullying and berating him over the phone, Mayor Bill de Blasio was quick to pounce. “That’s classic Andrew Cuomo,” de Blasio said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe last week. “The bullying is nothing new,” he added.
Yesterday a former staffer named Lindsey Boylan accused Gov. Cuomo of sexual harassment. And once again, Mayor de Blasio seems to have been the first to call for an investigation.
“Look, these allegations are really disturbing, let’s be clear about that,” de Blasio said.
“When a woman comes forward with this kind of very specific allegations, we have to take it seriously.”
The mayor added: “This kind of behavior, if true, is unacceptable.”
It’s hard to blame him. De Blasio has had a front row seat for months of the media’s love affair with Cuomo while knowing all along what a jerk the guy is to everyone around him. It had to be driving him crazy that Cuomo was being treated as the hero of the pandemic. Now that Cuomo’s star is falling, he’s clearly enjoying it.
As one of my friends on Twitter pointed out yesterday, you would expect some people to start calling for Cuomo’s resignation at this point.
Any good reason national Democrats aren't calling for @NYGovCuomo to resign? Or at least face impeachment?
He lied about thousands of COVID deaths.
He still refuses full transparency.
Likely committed federal crimes.
And now sexual abuse Allegations.
What else do they need?
— Pradheep J. Shanker (@Neoavatara) February 25, 2021
But while de Blasio has spoken up, Fox News points out that a lot of Democratic women who’ve spoke up about #MeToo issues in the past are now refusing to comment.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, an outspoken supporter of women’s rights who had blasted former Senate colleague Al Franken, D-Minn., as he was ousted following his own misconduct allegations in 2018, did not respond to Fox News’ requests for comment on her home-state governor…
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, a longtime Cuomo ally, did not respond to Fox News’ request for comment. Neither did House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who last week joined GOP critics of Cuomo in calling for an investigation into the nursing home crisis, did not respond to Fox News’ requests for comment.
The National Organization for Women also kept mum.
Gillibrand, Clinton and Ocasio-Cortez are all from New York making it especially difficult to explain why they aren’t speaking up. But not everyone is a hypocrite. You have to give Rose McGowan credit. She is the honey badger of of the #MeToo movement and unlike others who quickly found ways to ignore allegations that didn’t suit their political interests, McGowan has been consistent. She’s still supporting Biden accuser Tara Reade and today she’s backing Lindsey Boylan:
“I completely stand by Lindsey Boylan. Its truth leaks from every word on the screen that she wrote,” McGowan told us. “She, none of us, should endure what she endured. If they’re doing it to her, what are they doing to constituents? What is he going to do to what he considers the little people? It’s monstrous.”…
“Imagine how tired Lindsey Boylan is? She just wants to go to work and do her job, something she studied for, worked hard for, fought for and fought to make a difference in a way she knows how,” the former “Charmed” star said. “She has to be scared of being alone with a man who’s her superior? It’s so unfair.”
Of course I believe the accused should have a right to defend themselves and I don’t believe every accusation. The ones against Brett Kavanaugh didn’t stick because no one backed them up. And the ones against Woody Allen strike me as dubious. But I believe the stories about Cuomo, in part because there’s really no doubt he’s an abusive, arrogant jerk to a lot of people behind the scenes. And once you concede that, it’s not hard to take the next step and believe he’s also particularly terrible to women he finds attractive. There are probably more women out there with stories to tell. Hopefully we’ll hear from them soon. And maybe at some point New York Democrats will find their voices.