New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman resigned Tuesday following accusations of abuse by four women who told The New Yorker he became violent after drinking and often while in bed. Schneiderman denies the allegations. Governor Andrew Cuomo, who called for Schneiderman to step down Monday night, now calling for an investigation into possible criminal charges. Cuomo talking about the allegations today.
Cuomo called the women who came forward ‘especially courageous.
Cuomo says the Solicitor General will serve as the Acting Attorney General. A joint session of the state legislature will select a candidate but voters will ultimately decide.
More reaction from around the state:
Cynthia Nixon, Democratic gubernatorial candidate: “The descriptions by these brave women of the physical and sexual abuse they suffered at the hands of NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman are sickening. It is the right decision for him to resign immediately. The women who came forward so courageously to tell their stories and spared others from suffering are heroines. The investigation should continue. We need to get to the bottom of the enormous culture of silence that protects those in power. We must continue to work to end this national epidemic.”
State Senator Pam Helming: “The allegations against Eric Schneiderman are alarming. The people of New York State deserve answers, and these women deserve justice. No one is above the law. We must hold those who commit acts of violence and abuse accountable, especially when they are elected officials. Resignation is not enough. There needs to be a full, thorough investigation.”
Assemblyman Phil Palmesano: “The allegations detailed in The New Yorker last night are deeply disturbing. It was appropriate for the attorney general to step down and resign. My heart goes out to the victims and their families. New Yorkers must not tolerate this conduct from anyone, let alone the top law enforcement official in the state. It’s sad. “I am pleased that voters will have a chance to select an honorable candidate worthy of the important office of attorney general this coming November. Regardless of what actions the Legislature takes in the coming days, I am confident that Solicitor General Barbara Underwood will serve effectively on an interim basis. She is a well-respected and highly regarded public attorney who has argued numerous cases in front of the Supreme Court and served our country as principal deputy solicitor general.”
Marc Molinaro, Republican gubernatorial candidate: In the wake of the shocking resignation of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro called on the state legislature to reassert their constitutional authority and begin to reestablish the public trust by appointing a truly independent attorney general. “Like Eric Schneiderman, for too long Andrew Cuomo has enjoyed a free ride from prosecutors and state leaders fearful of his power and political retribution. New Yorkers deserve an independent watchdog who will pursue corruption no matter the party, the perpetrator or the office holder,” said Molinaro. He continued, “We need a pledge from the next attorney general that they will no longer look the other way and investigate the rampant corruption of the Cuomo administration starting in the Executive Chamber and Division of Criminal Justice Services.” The allegations against Schneiderman continues the trend of Democrat New York statewide office holders who have left office in disgrace. Molinaro called on the Legislature to “not rush” to appoint a new attorney general, without hearings and a full vetting by the people and press.