CNN En Español’s Directo USA anchor Juan Carlos Lopez repeatedly compared Governor Andrew Cuomo’s resignation as a result of extensive sexual harassment allegations to the impeachments of President Donald Trump. What’s worse, the comparison was a favorable one to Cuomo.
Watch as Lopez and correspondent María Santana showcase Cuomo as an example of leadership who, although denying proven accusations, is humbly stepping down “for the good of his people.”
President Biden speaking on Andrew Cuomo's resignation. The Governor of New York, who in spite of the allegations, the testimonies, and the New York state Attorney General's report (an independent investigation) denied the allegations, but nonetheless says he will be resigning. Let's go to New York, where Maria Santana has been following this case. Maria, the New Yorker tone reminds me of a former president who also did not accept responsibility for his actions. Cuomo doesn't, but he leaves, because as he says, it is for the good of others.
Cuomo tried former President Trump's strategy of denying responsibility but didn't have the same result.
Like another New Yorker he says he didn't do anything, but he leaves in fourteen days.
It is unclear which impeachment Lopez is comparing Cuomo’s case with. Regardless, Trump was never convicted and served a full term. Although Lopez focused on Cuomo’s denials of wrongdoing, there was no mention made of Trump’s denials, or that he was never convicted by the Senate. In Cuomo’s case, he has been under scrutiny for over a year. In that timeframe, all the charges against him have proven to be true. Trump’s impeachments have nothing to do Cuomo’s sexual harassment scandals, or with his executive order on nursing homes, which led to the deaths of over 15,000 seniors in New York. López’ references to “that other New Yorker” were cheap and forced, and seemed to be an attempt to distract viewers from Cuomo’s wrongdoing.
Instead of focusing on the reality of Cuomo’s crimes, Santana points out the “positive side” and portrays Cuomo’s resignation as a historical moment for women because Kathy Hochul will now be the first woman to govern the state of New York. It is ironic that Kathy Hochul will become governor due to sexual harassment allegations of her predecessor. What a great example and victory for women in the United States, right? This idea is also supported by Attorney and CNN contributor Rocío Velez, who is interviewed in the segment and pushes the narrative of Cuomo’s resignation as somehow depicting a positive picture for the Democratic Party.
The record will reflect that through it all, no mention was made of CNN anchor Chris Cuomo’s role as an advisor to his brother, the soon-to-be-former Governor of New York.
These false narratives brought to you by GoodRx. Write them here to tell them what you think about their support of biased reporting.
Click “Expand” to view the full transcripts of the aforementioned segment as aired on CNN En Español’s Directo USA on Tuesday, August 10, 2021.
REPORTER: You called on him to resign, did you think he would?
BIDEN: I respect the Governor's decision and I respect the decision he made.
JUAN CARLOS LOPEZ, CNN: President Biden speaking on Andrew Cuomo's resignation. The Governor of New York, who in spite of the allegations, the testimonies, and the New York state Attorney General's report (an independent investigation) denied the allegations, but nonetheless says he will be resigning. Let's go to New York, where Maria Santana has been following this case. Maria, the New Yorker tone reminds me of a former president who also did not accept responsibility for his actions. Cuomo doesn't, but he leaves, because as he says, it is for the good of others.
MARIA SANTANA, CNN: That's right, Governor Cuomo remained defiant until the last moment. In this decision that caught many by surprise and has definitely shaken the political realm here in New York and across the United States, Governor Cuomo finally gave in to pressure and warnings of impeachment and announced his resignation just a week after the release of the state attorney general's devastating report that proved Cuomo had sexually harassed 11 women and retaliated against at least one of his accusers in violation of federal and state laws. The report, Juan Carlos, detailed several incidents in which Cuomo allegedly touched and kissed several women on several occasions on their intimate parts without their consent, or made comments of a sexual nature towards them. Cuomo, as you say, denies these allegations, and this is what he said in announcing his resignation at the same time that he continues to deny these allegations. Let's listen:
ANDREW CUOMO: And I think that given the circumstances, the best way I can help now, is if I step aside and let government get back to governing. And therefore that’s what I’ll do, because I work for you. And doing the right thing, is doing the right thing for you. Because, as we say, it's not about me, it's about we. Kathy Hochul, my lieutenant governor, is smart and competent. This transition must be seamless. We have a lot going on. I am a New Yorker: born and bred. I am a fighter, and my instinct is to fight through this controversy, because I truly believe it is politically motivated. I believe it is unfair and it is untruthful. And I believe it demonizes behavior that is unsustainable for society.
MARIA SANTANA, CNN: And Juan Carlos, Cuomo says that his decision will take effect in 14 days, making way for lieutenant governor Kathy Hochul to become the first woman to govern in New York state. A truly surprising turnaround for someone who only a year ago was one of the most highly respected Democrats in the country especially because he was known for his handling of the covid-19 pandemic when New York was considered the epicenter of the crisis in the United States. But this resignation does not end the governor’s problems. Prosecutors who are investigating these incidents in a criminal manner say that they are going to continue their investigations, and two members of the state assembly's judiciary committee told CNN that the committee's lawyers are investigating whether or not they can indict Governor Andrew Cuomo now that he announced his resignation. They plan to meet next week to discuss next steps, especially since they are not only investigating these allegations of sexual harassment, but also whether there was a cover-up of deaths in nursing homes in the state during the covid-19 crisis, if Cuomo used public resources to publish and promote his book on his handling of the pandemic, as well as giving priority to members of his family and close circles for covid-19 testing during all this, Juan Carlos.
JUAN CARLOS LOPEZ, CNN: Like another New Yorker he says he didn't do anything, but he leaves in fourteen days. Thank you very much María Santana, reporting from New York. And as Maria reported, the next governor will be Cuomo's lieutenant governor, Kathy Hochul. Who is this woman who comes into office; the first woman to be governor of New York? Well, she has worked with Cuomo since 2015, he came to the governorship in 2011 and she has been his lieutenant governor since 2015. She is 62, a graduate of Syracuse University, an important university, and the first woman to govern New York state. She has worked with him since 2014, and has more than 25 years of experience in both state and national level. And according to her Twitter account, she posted a message this afternoon today in which she said she agreed with the governor's decision to resign, saying it's the right thing to do and is the best thing in the interest of New Yorkers. She said that as someone who has served at all levels of government, and who is next in the line of succession, she is prepared to be the 57th governor of the state. Let's analyze what this means, a leading political figure such as Andrew Cuomo who as governor was considered to be a possible presidential candidate. Today the scenario is very different. Let’s go to Alexandria, Virginia, where we find Rocio Velez. She's a Republican strategy lawyer. Rocio, this was something that was anticipated but Cuomo’s tone was defiant, and he does not accept responsibility but is still resigning. What is your reaction to this moment and are you changing your dynamic? Because Cuomo's explanation is that he realizes that times have changed and what was acceptable a few years ago, is no longer acceptable.
ROCIO VELEZ: To me it was a surprise, Juan Carlos, because until yesterday I thought that he would stick to his position as many other politicians who have suffered disgrace for sexual harassment or for other incidents and scandals. And in New York that is almost always the style. But, turning that page, now, I imagine that what he was thinking was that he still has a political future. And he did well to resign because the next thing would be for the assembly to throw him out. So for me I think it does justice also because I think the steps were taken on the part of the attorney general, of how this followed, I don't think there was; we have heard and were hearing your intervention before. In the case of the nursing homes, and I think there's a lot left there because there are many calling for his negligence to be looked into in some form or another. I'm very happy that at least we're going to have the first female governor of New York State. But this one is not going to be the last case that's going to affect Republicans or Democrats. This kind of scandal is no longer permitted. And even though the governor says that he now realizes that these are different times, we've been talking about this for months. He handled it very poorly.
JUAN CARLOS LOPEZ, CNN: Now, you were talking about the nursing home scandals. What is the complaint that the state sent healthy elderly people to places where there were infected elderly people which caused the number of people who died from covid-19 to increase? Is the political landscape changing, Rocio, as Cuomo tried former President Trump's strategy of denying responsibility but didn't have the same result? That he is a Democratic governor, the prosecutor is Democratic, the legislature is Democratic? He still claims that this is political persecution, but the independent inquiry report refers to 11 women with allegations of alleged sexual assault. Did Cuomo lose the political picture of what this report meant by the very detailed information it presented?
ROCIO VELEZ: Yes, power inebriates. He knew he had, not only is this political, everything is political once you sit in that seat and assume that position. When Pataki was there, he had to face all the circumstances; De Blasio every day faces political situations, but these in particular are very serious allegations. On Sunday I was actually hearing the testimonies of one of the women who suffered from this. And when you already have all that -he was caught at a dead end -on a dead end street and he did not realize that. Yesterday obviously his advisors told him ‘Governor, you still have a point, something is left, but he still made the decision to resign. But what surprised me, Juan Carlos, because I didn't expect the resignation, I thought the guy was going to stay until the end. I mean it also speaks very well of the Democratic party and I will admit that even with Maria Cardona when we have a lot of opinions. And I thought that in a situation more about the party that the party is preparing to elect someone. And obviously the political scheme is to take advantage and put someone and not lose that seat to a Republican again.
JUAN CARLOS LOPEZ, CNN: And in a state of Democratic majority, let's see what the process is. You were also saying this isn't over. A lawyer, a woman represents Cuomo and denied the allegations and spoke of irregularities in the report but still after that denial the governor resigned. He's leaving in 14 days. Many thanks to Rocio Velez, a Republican strategy lawyer, a political chorelator for CNN. Thank you for being back in Directo USA.