CNN host Chris Cuomo aired a public apology after he admitted to advising his older brother, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, on how to navigate the numerous sexual harassment allegations leveled against him in recent months.
Hours after the Washington Post reported that the younger Cuomo had participated in multiple strategy calls with his brother and gubernatorial aides, Cuomo used part of his Thursday evening to broadcast to apologize for hurting CNN’s reputation.
“There are stories out there about me offering my brother advice. Of course I do. This is no revelation. I have said it publicly, and I certainly have never hidden it,” he began.
“When my brother’s situation became turbulent, being looped into calls with other friends of his and advisors that did include some of his staff, I understand why that was a problem for CNN,” he continued. “It will not happen again.”
The governor’s office in Albany has faced investigations into numerous scandals, including allegations of sexual harassment in the workplace from several former women staffers. The elder Cuomo has rejected the claims and insisted his behavior was friendly and nothing out of the ordinary.
The young Cuomo’s statement comes after his sibling stated at a recent press briefing that making “someone uncomfortable” does not qualify as sexual harassment, despite state law, which he helped enact, stipulating a lower evidentiary standard for sexual harassment claims.
The host interviewed his brother earlier in the year about New York’s COVID-19 pandemic management in a way that appeared to be an endorsement of the governor’s performance during the crisis. Cuomo is now being probed for his latest book release and his alleged abuse of state resources, including employees, for the book’s production. The memoir is positioned to earn $5.12 million, the governor’s office confirmed Monday.
The governor’s administration has also been under fire after for manipulating the data on nursing home COVID deaths in the state by undercounting the total by thousands and then orchestrating a cover-up in an attempt to shield Cuomo from political criticism.
CNN also told The Washington Post Thursday that the younger Cuomo did not help determine coverage of the governor but that it was “inappropriate” for him to weigh in on a family member’s political dealings.
“It was a mistake because I put my colleagues here, who I believe are the best in the business, in a bad spot. I never intended for that, I would never intend for that and I’m sorry for that,” Cuomo remarked.
The CNN host concluded by making an appeal to his primetime audience base, stating that he values his occupation and his viewers, who he believes will remain loyal to the network despite his journalistic malfeasance.
“You know who I am, you know what I’m about and I want this to be said in public to you,” he said.