Cuomo accuser Charlotte Bennett slams gov’s ‘fake’ apology

Charlotte Bennett, a former aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo who accused him of sexual harassment earlier this 12 months, mentioned Tuesday that the three-term Democrat was normalizing “not solely victim-blaming, however sexual harassment” in his response to state AG Letitia James’ bombshell report that discovered Cuomo harassed 11 women in violation of state and federal legal guidelines.

“He’s saying that girls come ahead with their tales and we don’t have to take it critically,” Bennett instructed “CBS Night Information with Norah O’Donnell.”

“It’s merely a circus act at this level.”

Bennett, who labored as an govt assistant and well being coverage adviser, went public along with her claims about Cuomo in The New York Occasions this previous February. She claimed the governor had requested her inappropriate private questions, mentioned he was open to relationships with ladies of their 20s, and left her feeling that he “needed to sleep with me.”

Charlotte Bennett, who accused Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment, appearing on CBS Evening News on August 3, 2021.
Charlotte Bennett, who accused Gov. Andrew Cuomo of sexual harassment, showing on CBS Night Information on August 3, 2021.
CBS Night Information

The James report details how Cuomo grew to become fixated on Bennett’s expertise as a sexual assault survivor. In Might of final 12 months, she texted a colleague following a dialog with Cuomo: “The best way he was repeating ‘you have been raped and abused and attacked and assaulted and betrayed’ time and again whereas trying me immediately within the eyes was one thing out of a horror film. It was like he was testing me.”

Charlotte Bennett said Gov. Cuomo's response to the probe normalized "not only victim-blaming, but sexual harassment."
Charlotte Bennett mentioned Gov. Cuomo’s response to the probe normalized “not solely victim-blaming, however sexual harassment.”
CBS Night Information

The next month, the report finds, the governor instructed to Bennett that she had hassle staying in monogamous relationships as a result of she needed “management” following her assault.

Cuomo singled out Bennett in his response to the report earlier Tuesday, saying that her allegations in opposition to him “bothered me most”.

“I assumed I may assist her work by means of a tough time,” the governor mentioned. “I did ask her [Bennett] questions I don’t usually ask folks. I did ask her how she was doing and the way she was feeling. And I did ask inquiries to attempt to see if she had optimistic, supportive courting relationships … I used to be making an attempt to ensure she was working her manner by means of it the most effective she may. I assumed I had discovered sufficient and had sufficient private expertise to assist. However I used to be incorrect.”

“He’s making an attempt to justify himself by making me out to be somebody who can’t inform the distinction between sexual harassment and mentorship,” responded Bennett, who added: “Publicly, he would slightly play dumb. Privately, he is aware of that he sexually harassed staffers and I feel it’s simpler to elucidate his habits publicly by saying there was some misunderstanding.”

Cuomo immediately addressed Bennett in his remarks, saying he was “really and deeply sorry” for what he mentioned and did.

Bennett claimed she felt "vindicated" by the sexual harassment probe's findings.
Bennett claimed she felt “vindicated” by the sexual harassment probe’s findings.
CBS Night Information

“I introduced my private expertise into the office and I shouldn’t have accomplished that. I used to be making an attempt to assist. Clearly, I didn’t,” he mentioned. “I’m much more sorry that I additional difficult the scenario. My aim was the precise reverse. I want nothing however good for you, and for all survivors of sexual assault.”

Bennett emphatically rejected the governor’s apology Tuesday night time.

“Accepting accountability means stepping down, so I don’t imagine him, and I don’t need an apology,” she mentioned. “It’s not crucial. It’s pretend, and his propaganda video was not solely uncomfortable and inappropriate, however downright bizarre, and pointless.”

Bennett added that she felt “vindicated” by James’ report and warned Albany legislators that they “have a accountability to behave and impeach” the three-term governor if he doesn’t resign.

“We now have a report. We now have the details,” she mentioned. “The governor broke federal and state legislation when he sexually harassed me, and present and former staffers … I’m not confused. It isn’t complicated. I’m dwelling in actuality and it’s unhappy to see that he’s not.” | Cuomo accuser Charlotte Bennett slams gov’s ‘pretend’ apology

Huynh Nguyen

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