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Assembly Judiciary Committee inches closer to Cuomo impeachment

Aug 10, 2021 6:33 am

Joshua Solomon reports in the Times Union that state Assembly leaders won't be drafting articles of impeachment against Gov. Andrew Cuomo until at least mid-September. Last week, the attorney general issued a report outlining 11 sexual harassment allegations against Cuomo, and virtually every state politician has called for his resignation and/or impeachment. But those elected leaders are taking their time to remove Cuomo. "If we are not in a position to present our best case, he could very well win in the court of impeachment," Judiciary Committee Chair Charles D. Lavine said. "For everyone who's concerned about him being in office now, if he wins, and he returns to office unfettered, that is another danger. So it's a matter of balance." A majority in the state Assembly would have to vote for a trial in September, then there is a 30-day waiting period before the Senate trial begins. If the Assembly votes for a trial, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul takes Cuomo's place atop the state government during the impeachment proceedings. "We had a historic moment in our state's modern history," Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie said after the Aug. 9 meeting of the Judiciary Committee. "For the first time in more than 100 years, the Assembly is undertaking an impeachment investigation of a sitting governor." Heastie said the committee's investigation, led by the law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell, has cost "millions" so far. Cuomo has until 5 p.m. Aug. 13 to provide written evidence and responses to the Judiciary Committee's investigation. The committee is scheduled to meet Aug. 16 and Aug. 23, and may move impeachment closer to an Assembly vote, which might come after Labor Day and Yom Kippur in September. "I think we'll probably head in for some sort of vote right after that time period is over," said Assemblyperson Phil Steck, a Democrat from Colonie, and a member of the committee. Read more about this story in the Times Union.