Will the New York state Assembly move forward with its impeachment investigation now that Gov. Andrew Cuomo has resigned? Can the Assembly even continue the process?
Those remain open questions. The state constitution says a governor convicted in a Senate impeachment trial could be barred from holding public office in the state.
The third-term governor’s resignation, which will take effect in two weeks, was announced as momentum built in the Legislature to remove him by impeachment and after nearly the entire Democratic establishment had turned against him, with President Joe Biden joining those calling on him to resign.
PIX11 spoke to several lawmakers who said they still wanted the impeachment process to move forward. Republicans exulted in Cuomo’s departure but still urged impeachment, which could prevent him from running for office again.
“This resignation is simply an attempt to avoid real accountability,” state GOP chair Nick Langworthy said.
Assembly Judiciary Committee member Tom Abinanti says members are waiting to hear from Chair Chuck Levine about whether the committee will move ahead with plans to wrap up its wide-ranging impeachment probe in “weeks.”
Abinanti, a Democrat, said the committee has asked its lawyers if there’s a “legal basis to continue with an impeachment investigation and issue articles of impeachment if the governor resigns.” He says he hopes the committee will proceed with the investigation and make a full report.
As of Monday, the Judiciary Committee had two hearings scheduled for Aug. 16 and Aug. 23. They’ve been looking at not just the sexual harassment accusations, but also the governor’s handling of nursing homes during the pandemic, and other possible abuses of power — like Cuomo’s $5 million book deal.