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Gov. Cuomo Blames Politics For His Downfall; CNY Assemblymember Sees Disconnect In Cuomo's Behavior

CUOMO MAGNARELLI AND STIRPE2.jpg
Mike Groll/Mike Groll/Office of Governor An
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Assemblymembers Bill Magnarelli, left, and Al Stirpe, right with Gov. Cuomo during a lighter moment at the state fairgrounds earlier this summer.

In two weeks, Governor Cuomo will no longer be at the helm of a state he has led for nearly 11 years. He announced his resignation Tuesday, saying everything he has done has been motivated by a love for New York State.

"The best way I can help now is if I step aside and let government get back to governing. And therefore, that's what I'll do. Kathy Hochul, my lieutenant governor is smart and competent. This transition must be seamless."

Cuomo says the ongoing impeachment proceedings in the assembly will consume government, leading to months of litigation.

"This situation, by its current trajectory, will generate months of political and legal controversy. That is what is going to happen. That is how the political wind is blowing."

Cuomo’s resignation announcement comes exactly a week after the state attorney general’s scathing report corroborating the sexual harassment allegations of 11 women.

He remained defiant and defensive, saying the charges are false, and that most of his hugs, kisses, and remarks were meant to be friendly or funny. Instead, he says he now knows women found it dated and offensive. Cuomo says the environment is too reactionary for what he calls intelligent discussion on gender based actions and generational and cultural behavioral differences. He says his instinct is to fight back.

"I truly believe it is politically motivated. I believe it is unfair and untruthful. If I could communicate the facts through the frenzy, New Yorkers would understand."

Cuomo says he never did and never will disrespect a woman. He also spent a few moments of his 20 minute speech highlighting the accomplishments of his nearly three terms in office, from gun safety legislation and the $15 minimum wage, to free tuition to SUNY and CUNY schools for struggling families, new airports, and an effective green economy.

In the end, he told New Yorkers it was an honor to lead.

"Thank you for the honor of serving you. It has been the honor of my lifetime. God bless you," he concluded.

LONG-TIME CNY ASSEMBLYMEMBER SEES DISCONNECT IN CUOMO'S BEHAVIOR

Nearly Two months ago to the day, State Assemblymember Al Stirpe was attending Governor Andrew Cuomo’s press conference at the state fairgrounds. Tuesday he witnessed the fall of a political giant.

Stirpe is expressing his disappointment in Cuomo taking this long to resign following the findings of the State AG’s Sexual Harassment Investigation a week ago Tuesday. He says Cuomo’s behavior didn’t match his drive to be a successful, well-calculated leader.

"I thought he was very disciplined. I guess I'd say that above all else. He was a really hard-working guy. Very strategic, always knew what one move meant, and what would happen if he did this or did that," Stirpe said.

"I can't imagine why in his mind he would think there would be no ramifications from acting inappropriately with women. Especially after all the action taken on behalf of his administration and the legislature to protect women and give them a bigger voice when things are not right. That's what I'm most disappointed in, that he just couldn't realize just how bad these things really were."

Governor Cuomo announced that he will resign from office in 14 days. Stirpe says he is confident of a smooth transition of power to Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.