The NYT Takes Andrew Cuomo Out on Lake Tahoe to do Some Fishing -- A Second Former Aide (25) Accuses Him of Sexual Harassment and It's Bad

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

The NYT put a metaphorical muzzle to the back of the head of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Saturday in pulling off a political assassination through its reporting on the allegations of a 25-year-old former aide to the Governor.


A massive 2500 word story appeared on the newspaper’s website on Saturday afternoon with on-the-record statements from a second former aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo stating that the Governor had made clear his interest in having a sexual relationship with her, leading her to resign in November 2020.

The details of her story are set forth below.  But as for Cuomo, here is all you need to know in order to understand how his career is now going to end:

Charlotte Bennett is 25.  Andrew Cuomo is 63.

His interest in having a sexual relationship with Bennett became animated after she told him about a speech she was going to give at her alma mater in which she would describe having been sexually assaulted in college.

Ms. Bennett said she had mentioned a speech she was scheduled to give to Hamilton students about her experience as a survivor of sexual assault. She said she had been taken aback by Mr. Cuomo’s seeming fixation on that element of her life experience.

“The way he was repeating, ‘You were raped and abused and attacked and assaulted and betrayed,’ over and over again while looking me directly in the eyes was something out of a horror movie,” she wrote in a second text to her friend. “It was like he was testing me.”

The Times’ story is further proof of what I wrote ten days ago at the end of this story about the public disclosures about Cuomo’s administration giving false information to the legislature about the number of nursing home deaths and the subsequent story that the FBI was now looking into the matter.


There are plenty of Democrat politicians in NY and DC who would see their own prospects brighten in the event of Cuomo’s fall. This is a circumstance where the knives probably come out for Cuomo, and someone gets his scalp. He knows that, and that is why his response to criticism from other Democrats has been so strident.

The new story is a very deep dive by the paper’s Albany Bureau Chief — this is not a piece of “anecdotal” reporting on a “news of the day” story.  The Times says Bennett decided to publicly come forward after former Cuomo Administration aide Lindsay Boylan made public her experiences being sexually harassed by Cuomo — including unwanted “touching” in the form of a kiss.

After seeing Ms. Boylan detail her accusations against Mr. Cuomo, Ms. Bennett shared Ms. Boylan’s account on Twitter, suggesting that people read it if they wanted a true picture of “what it’s like to work for the Cuomo” administration.

The Times contacted Ms. Bennett, and she agreed to relate her own account of harassment. She said she felt an obligation to other victims of sexual harassment and wanted to counter the way Mr. Cuomo “wields his power.”

In a series of interviews this week, she said the governor had asked her numerous questions about her personal life, including whether she thought age made a difference in romantic relationships, and had said that he was open to relationships with women in their 20s — comments she interpreted as clear overtures to a sexual relationship.


The threat is now so great that Cuomo was forced to provide a statement in response to Bennett’s allegations in order to have some response appear in the story, and it seems that the Times wasn’t willing to accept a statement from a spokesperson on behalf of the Governor as might normally be the case.

Mr. Cuomo said in a statement to The Times on Saturday that he believed he had been acting as a mentor and had “never made advances toward Ms. Bennett, nor did I ever intend to act in any way that was inappropriate.” He said he had requested an independent review of the matter and asked that New Yorkers await the findings “before making any judgments.”

That is a problematic “non-denial.”  The statement acknowledges that inappropriate conduct is not going to be disputed — the Governor simply disclaims any bad intentions — he didn’t actually mean to suggest he wanted to sleep with the 25-year-old.

“I understood that the governor wanted to sleep with me, and felt horribly uncomfortable and scared,” Ms. Bennett said. “And was wondering how I was going to get out of it and assumed it was the end of my job.”

Andrew Cuomo was divorced from his wife in 2005 after 15 years of marriage and currently is not married.  He has three daughters — twins who are 25, and a younger daughter who is 23.  Bennett told the Times that she told Cuomo she played middle-school soccer with one of Cuomo’s twin daughters.

Here are the key details in the timeline of the very specific allegations made by Bennett against Cuomo to the Times — including confirmations that many of the events were discussed by her with friends and family at about the same time they took place:


Bennett was hired in early 2019, working out of the governor’s Manhattan office as a briefer, an entry-level position.

Mr. Cuomo, she said, would sometimes ask questions about her dating life that she said seemed inappropriate but not necessarily unmanageable.

Bennett was asked in late March to begin working in Albany as part of the state’s Covid-19 response effort.

On May 15, she arrived at the Capitol around 7 a.m. to find Mr. Cuomo already at work. Mr. Cuomo began asking about her love life and whether she was involved with other members of the governor’s staff. She memorialized the exchange in several texts to another Cuomo staff member that The Times reviewed.

Bennett said she mentioned during their conversation a speech she was scheduled to give to Hamilton College students — her alma mater — about her experience as a survivor of sexual assault. She said she had been taken aback by Mr. Cuomo’s seeming fixation on that element of her life experience.

“The way he was repeating, ‘You were raped and abused and attacked and assaulted and betrayed,’ over and over again while looking me directly in the eyes was something out of a horror movie,” she wrote in a second text to her friend. “It was like he was testing me.”

In retrospect, Ms. Bennett said, she viewed the May 15 meeting “as the turning point in our relationship.”

“Anything before it I now see differently,” she said. “I now understand that as grooming.”

Three weeks later, Ms. Bennett said, she was summoned to Mr. Cuomo’s second-floor office and was asked to take dictation with another aide.

After the second aide left, Mr. Cuomo asked her to turn off her recorder, and he began a winding conversation that included questions about her personal life, including whether she was romantically involved, whether she was monogamous in her relationships and whether she had ever had sex with older men.

A series of text exchanges with a female friend from that afternoon, June 5, were consistent with Bennett’s story as told to the Times’s reporter.

When her friend asked whether Mr. Cuomo had done anything physical to Ms. Bennett, she responded: “No but it was like the most explicit it could be.”

Bennett continued to discuss the episode via text with friends, writing that the governor had asked her whether she was having sex with other people “while in my recent relationships.”

In the interview, Ms. Bennett said Cuomo told her he was lonely… adding that he referred to “wanting a girlfriend, preferably in the Albany area.”

Cuomo had also asked about her feelings about age differences in relationships, saying “age doesn’t matter,” according to a text she sent to her friend.

“He asked me if I believed if age made a difference in relationships and he also asked me in the same conversation if I had ever been with an older man,” Ms. Bennett reiterated in an interview with The Times.

At one juncture, Ms. Bennett said, the governor also noted that he felt “he’s fine with anyone above the age of 22,” a point that came up after they discussed her speech at Hamilton on what was her 25th birthday.

Asked if she felt Mr. Cuomo’s questions and comments were an entreaty to a sexual relationship, Ms. Bennett said: “That’s absolutely how it felt.”

A friend of Ms. Bennett’s, a former Cuomo administration official, said he had spoken to her shortly after the June 5 episode. He confirmed the contours of her account, saying that she had made it clear to him that she believed the governor wanted to have sex with her.

Ms. Bennett told her parents about the encounter within days, her mother recalled, saying her daughter had made a special visit home to do so. “She was obviously upset,” Ms. Bennett’s mother said.

Ms. Bennett said she spoke to Mr. Cuomo’s chief of staff, Ms. DesRosiers, on June 10, five days after the episode.


This is Pornhub territory.  Bennett tells Cuomo a story about being a survivor of sexual assault, and he can’t stop repeating a line underscoring what was clearly a traumatic and painful memory for her — evidencing HIS fixation on the event SHE lived through.

And then in a subsequent conversation, he begins to probe her with questions that signaled he was thinking “Hey, what about the idea of having sex with me?”

Take a moment to consider the thoughts that must have gone through Cuomo’s mind in bed alone at night in the three weeks between the two conversations Bennett described.

“Andrew Cuomo — 63-year-old creepy perve” is not exactly the kind of moniker you want to run for reelection behind.

This is a death blow to Cuomo in New York politics and makes it impossible for him to move to any meaningful position in the Biden Administration.  The Times’ treatment of this story — 2500 words when 700 could have probably “reported” it — is a signal to all who might be thinking about challenging Cuomo that the NYT will not be helping Cuomo.  It tells all that the accumulation of damaging stories about Cuomo has now reached terminal status.

I suspect the Times has sources inside the Southern District of New York US Attorney’s Office who have told the paper that there is legal exposure for Cuomo in connection with the withholding of accurate data on nursing home deaths from the Civil Rights Division of DOJ in the fall of 2020.


If true, this is a “mercy killing” meant to prompt whoever might believe themselves to be successors to Andrew Cuomo to step forward and make themselves known.

Let the games begin!!




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