A former staffer says that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo "sexually harassed me for years."
Lindsey Boylan, who is now running for Manhattan borough president, worked for the Cuomo administration from 2015 to 2018. In a series of tweets, she claimed that she was not Cuomo's only victim.
"I'm angry to be put in this situation at all," she wrote. "That because I am a woman, I can work hard my whole life to better myself and help others and yet still fall victim as countless women over generations have. Mostly silently. I hate that some men, like @NYGovCuomo abuse their power."
The claims did not go into specifics. Cuomo's office has denied the accusation.
Boylan, alas, has made it virtually impossible for the public to vet her claims, saying that she has "no interest in talking to journalists" about what happened.
To be clear: I have no interest in talking to journalists.
I am about validating the experience of countless women and making sure abuse stops.
My worst fear is that this continues. And as @FKAtwigs said yesterday, my second worst fear is having to talk about and relive this.
— Lindsey Boylan (@LindseyBoylan) December 13, 2020
While many progressive activists have long held that the claims of sexual assault survivors should garner something approaching automatic credulity, liberals tend to be somewhat more discerning when the accused is a Democrat. The media are certainly treading cautiously here; USA Today introduced the allegation with the important disclaimer than Boylan "has not yet provided any validating evidence."
This is actually the right way to handle evidence-free #MeToo declarations, and it would be better if it became the consistent standard moving forward.
If Boylan is not willing to go into greater detail, there just isn't much for the public to do with her claims. But there are plenty of other, legitimate and well-substantiated reasons to be angry with Cuomo: his denial of responsibility for some of the COVID-19 deaths in nursing homes, his draconian restrictions on restaurants and social gatherings, his bullying attitude toward people who struggle to practice social distancing, his hypocrisy, his comments casting doubt on the new COVID-19 vaccines, and on and on.
President-elect Joe Biden is apparently considering Cuomo for the position of attorney general. Unsubstantiated #MeToo allegations should not derail Cuomo's chances of landing that job—but given his appallingly bad leadership over the past year, he shouldn't even be a contender for it in the first place.