NEW YORK — Amid the ongoing scandal surrounding New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Rev. Al Sharpton questioned how the governor can continue to lead the state.
Leaders in the State Assembly said Monday they are ramping up their impeachment probe against Gov. Cuomo — and a vote on articles of impeachment could happen within weeks.
With everything going on, Sharpton told the PIX11 Morning News Cuomo can no longer govern.
“I think that it is very difficult for me to see how he can continue to govern,” he said. “Once you’ve lost the confidence of the Legislature, whether you feel that is right or wrong, you can’t govern.”
Sharpton also said if he were in the position, he “would rather resign than be impeached.”
New York State Attorney General Letitia James released her report on an investigation into Cuomo and found he sexually harassed multiple state employees as well as women outside of his administration.
The nearly five-month investigation, conducted by two outside lawyers who spoke to 179 people, found that the Cuomo administration was a “hostile work environment” and that it was “rife with fear and intimidation.”
The Judiciary Committee, which is handling impeachment, met for the first time since the attorney general’s report alleging sexual misconduct by Cuomo.
The committee will have two more hearings — August 16 and August 23, mostly behind closed doors. They’ll be followed by public hearings shortly after, set to include advocates on behalf of sexual assault survivors, and experts on the New York State Constitution.
Sharpton also said there have already been names floating around of potential candidates to run in Cuomo’s place including Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, Congressman Thomas Suozzi, New York State Comptroller. Thomas DiNapoli as well as Attorney General Letitia James.
None of the names have expressed they plan to run, but they are exploring the opportunity.
Sharpton also warned that the longer the Cuomo investigation is not resolved, Democrats risk the majority leadership.
It goes beyond just one person, Sharpton added. It will also affect what happens with the state’s COVID-19 response, police reform and education.
Surging COVID cases, vaccine mandate?
Amid rising cases, Sharpton said people should have the option on whether or not to get vaccinated. He noted that people likely won’t get vaccinated if there’s a mandate.
Sharpton also said said if there is no vaccine mandate, people should get tested several times a week.
“That is the way we can proceed,” he said.
Sharpton also discussed this year’s March on Washington, which is focused on the threat of voting rights being suppressed, and celebrating Harlem Week in New York City and his favorite thing about the neighborhood.