Speed Reads

'abusive behavior'

Former Cuomo aide alleges he kissed her on the lips without consent, asked her to 'play strip poker'

A former aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) who accused him of sexual harassment last year has revealed new details of her allegations.

Lindsey Boylan, former deputy secretary for economic development and special adviser to Cuomo, in a Medium post Wednesday alleged he "abused his power as governor to sexually harass me, just as he had done with so many other women," and created a workplace culture in which sexual harassment and bullying is "not only condoned but expected."

Boylan, who first accused Cuomo of sexual harassment in December, alleged the governor in October 2017 asked her to "play strip poker" while they were flying home from an event and on another occasion kissed her on the lips without consent.

Before then, Boylan describes Cuomo as having made frequent "inappropriate gestures" toward her and going "out of his way to touch me on my lower back, arms and legs." She also writes that she was told by her boss that the governor had a "crush" on her, and that the director of the governor's offices told her Cuomo wanted her to look up pictures of his rumored former girlfriend because they "could be sisters" and she was "the better looking sister." Cuomo's "pervasive harassment extended beyond just me," Boylan alleges, adding, "his abusive behavior needs to stop."

The new allegations come as Cuomo is under fire over his handling of data on COVID-19 nursing home deaths in the state, as well as after a Democratic lawmaker alleged the governor threatened him. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) called on Cuomo to "immediately" resign in light of Boylan's allegations.

The governor's press secretary denied the claims on Wednesday, calling them "quite simply false." In reference to the "strip poker" allegation, Cuomo's press secretary pointed to flight manifests in saying "there was no flight where Lindsey was alone with the governor, a single press aide, and a NYS trooper" in October 2017.