New York State Assembly suspends Cuomo impeachment investigation

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CORRECTS CITY TO NEW YORK – In this still image from video, Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference in New York on Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021. Cuomo has resigned over a barrage of sexual harassment allegations in a fall from grace a year after he was widely hailed nationally for his detailed daily briefings and leadership during the darkest days of COVID-19. (Office of the Governor of New York via AP)

ALBANY, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie shared Friday that the Assembly will suspend its impeachment investigation upon Governor Cuomo’s resignation taking effect August 25.

He said that there are two reasons for the decision. ” First, the purpose of the Assembly Judiciary Committee’s impeachment investigation was to determine whether Governor Cuomo should remain in office. The governor’s resignation answers that directive. Second, we have been advised by Chair Lavine – with the assistance of counsel – of the belief that the constitution does not authorize the legislature to impeach and remove an elected official who is no longer in office.”

He said that the committee’s work over the last several months did uncover credible evidence in relation to allegations that have been made in reference to the governor.

“Underscoring the depth of this investigation, this evidence concerned not only sexual harassment and misconduct but also the misuse of state resources in relation to the publication of the governor’s memoir as well as improper and misleading disclosure of nursing home data during the COVID-19 pandemic,” he continues in his statement.

The Assembly Speaker said the assembly believes the evidence could likely have resulted in articles of impeachment had the governor not resigned.

He has asked Chair Lavine to turn over to the relevant investigatory authorities all the evidence the committee has gathered.

“We are well aware that the attorney general is investigating issues concerning the governor’s memoir; the Eastern District of the United States attorney has been investigating the administration’s actions concerning nursing home data; and there are active investigations by local law enforcement authorities in five jurisdictions – Manhattan, Albany, Westchester, Nassau and Oswego – concerning incidents of sexual misconduct.”

Heastie said this is a “tragic chapter in our state’s history” and said the government should operate in a transparent, safe, an honest manner.

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