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Thu Mar 4, 2021, 10:55 AM

"It's The Cuomo Way": Former Staffers Describe Toxic Workplace Under Governor's Relentless Thumb

Source: Gothamist

Sarah, a blonde woman in her twenties, won a fellowship to work in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office in 2013. She was surprised when she was quickly invited by senior staffers to sit at a desk positioned right near the governor — in his “line of sight,” as she described it.

At first, she didn’t understand why. Another woman in the office offered her some insight, telling her Cuomo “likes blondes,” particularly those in stiletto heels.

“You gotta wear heels when he’s in Albany sweetie, that’s the rule,” she said the woman told her. So, although Sarah was more accustomed to flats or boots, she soon amassed a small collection of stilettos — not because it was a written rule, but because it seemed necessary to succeed.

Nearly a dozen current and former staffers of Cuomo’s office who spoke to Gothamist/WNYC this week said Cuomo has cultivated an intense work culture that was brutal for some, traumatic for others. We are withholding all of their names, including Sarah's, because they fear professional or personal retaliation from the governor and his senior staff. Many still reside in New York where Cuomo’s reach extends far and wide.




Read more: https://gothamist.com/news/its-the-cuomo-way-former-staffers-describe-toxic-workplace-under-governors-relentless-thumb

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Reply "It's The Cuomo Way": Former Staffers Describe Toxic Workplace Under Governor's Relentless Thumb (Original post)
brooklynite Mar 2021 OP
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #1
Warpy Mar 2021 #15
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #24
Thekaspervote Mar 2021 #2
McKim Mar 2021 #6
PoliticAverse Mar 2021 #8
zentrum Mar 2021 #11
PoliticAverse Mar 2021 #13
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #26
brooklynite Mar 2021 #29
PoliticAverse Mar 2021 #32
brooklynite Mar 2021 #33
Dawson Leery Mar 2021 #14
FakeNoose Mar 2021 #16
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #27
PoliticAverse Mar 2021 #34
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #35
orangecrush Mar 2021 #20
orangecrush Mar 2021 #22
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #31
extvbroadcaster Mar 2021 #3
chia Mar 2021 #4
PoliticAverse Mar 2021 #9
chia Mar 2021 #28
bucolic_frolic Mar 2021 #5
lapucelle Mar 2021 #7
Midnight Writer Mar 2021 #17
zentrum Mar 2021 #10
TexasBushwhacker Mar 2021 #18
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #30
TexasBushwhacker Mar 2021 #37
MisterNiceKitty Mar 2021 #40
zentrum Mar 2021 #36
IzzaNuDay Mar 2021 #41
Name removed Mar 2021 #43
dalton99a Mar 2021 #12
Martin68 Mar 2021 #19
JI7 Mar 2021 #39
demmiblue Mar 2021 #21
Steelrolled Mar 2021 #23
Kaleva Mar 2021 #25
JI7 Mar 2021 #38
LuckyLib Mar 2021 #42

Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 11:03 AM

1. Interesting timing on these complaints though

This is his third term as governor and yet now we're just getting all this.

I still think it's up to the voters to decide whether to elect him for a 4th term.

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Response to MisterNiceKitty (Reply #1)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:53 PM

15. It certainly is

and so far, things like the above are the worst sort of hearsay, Nothing was in writing, it seems to have been a toxic culture promoted by other women.

It looks like the Republicans are trying to sabotage any future Democratic candidates.

And that is why my response is "Fuck you, file a civil suit for harassment or a criminal complaint for something worse. Trial by Twitter is not going to work on me."

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Response to Warpy (Reply #15)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:03 PM

24. yeah really - there's seems to be real resistance to waiting for an investigation

If the roles were reversed I'm sure the accusers would want the same benefit of the doubt.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 11:19 AM

2. Why now...who's behind this...one guess

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 12:36 PM

6. A Very Important Fact!

This is a very very important fact. Yet I can't help but wonder what would things be like today if men could control themselves?

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 01:24 PM

8. I'm gonna guess the person that wrote that doen't live in New York.

Sorry, but we won't be electing a 'Trump humper' as Governor.

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #8)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:19 PM

11. Maybe you're

.....not taking into account how conservative upstate New York is. And Staten Island, andparts of Queens.

He may be a pariah in NYC but there's other areas in this state that should give every Democrat pause.

And New York City itself once voted for Ghoulianni and Bloomberg. I'd be very careful.



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Response to zentrum (Reply #11)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:33 PM

13. 5,230,985 vs 3,244,798...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_United_States_presidential_election_in_New_York

Cuomo could always make his mission to take the Democratic party in New York down with him.

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Response to zentrum (Reply #11)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:04 PM

26. Not to mention the Pataki administration wasn't that long ago

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #8)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:09 PM

29. David Axelrod: Cuomo will hold on for his term but is done as a candidate in 2022

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #29)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:18 PM

32. Done as in won't run or won't win the primary or won't win the general election? n/r

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #32)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:19 PM

33. Won't win the GE, and is smart enough to realize it

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:40 PM

14. The GOP suddenly took an interest in NY state politics when Trump was installed in 2016.

This is why.

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:54 PM

16. The Lt. Governor of New York is a woman

... her name is Kathy Hochul and she's a Democrat. She has been Lt. Governor since 2015, and before that she represented the Congressional District 26th - Erie County, that includes Buffalo.

Wikipedia link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kathy_Hochul

If Andrew Cuomo were to resign now, Kathy Hochul would automatically step up and become governor, the first woman ever to do so in the state. It's unlikely IMHO that Hochul would ever pardon Chump. However she would need to face the voters for re-election as governor in 2024. Doesn't it seem possible that the Repukes would rather run against a woman - any woman - in 2024, instead of Andrew Cuomo? If the next elected governor in NYS were to be a Repuke, it's certain that a Chump pardon could happen quickly.

If the Repukes in NYS are anything like the Repukes in PA, I'd say that it's a possible or likely scenario. Andrea Junker may be onto something, even if she's not laying it all out in this tweet. I'd say this is not such a crazy conspiracy theory.





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Response to FakeNoose (Reply #16)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:07 PM

27. And people did try to overthrow the US government not that long ago

I doubt any "conspiracy theory" should be taken off the table at the moment.

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Response to MisterNiceKitty (Reply #27)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:19 PM

34. Maybe they will ineptly try to overthrow Albany too. n/t

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #34)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 06:19 PM

35. Would you like that?

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 04:04 PM

20. +1

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 04:38 PM

22. Of course.



And we keep falling for this shit.

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Response to Thekaspervote (Reply #2)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:12 PM

31. very interesting

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 11:20 AM

3. I've seen it all

I recently retired and I have seen it all with workplace sexual harassment. Women put up with it for the most part. By the time women enter the workforce they have had years of experience fending off men. And if a woman objects - well, then they are a "complainer" and are not a "team player." Or they have no sense of humor! And yes, some women do exploit their sexuality. And some do sleep with their bosses. And some get promoted because of it. And some meet their husbands at work. So the stuff with Cuomo does not surprise me. My last job had a woman that appeared to do little work. Yet she was highly paid. Somebody finally clued me in, she was the company presidents mistress. She could have you fired in an instant. Her and the company president went on "business" trips together, fully paid for by the company. It was really open fraud, since all they did was go to hot spots like Miami and frolic on the beach. So goes the workplace.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 11:27 AM

4. Money quote:

"People stayed because of what working in the Cuomo administration could mean for their careers; many former staffers hold top positions in government, public relations, technology, finance, and other companies."

Old story. Change the profession, change the city, change the administration. It's always about power, always will be.

"Everything down to the room temperature (between 67-71 degrees) had to be just so. Year-round, staff would place two small fans behind his speaking podium to keep him cool."

It's like they're looking for the worst dirt and this was the best they came up with. Because...

"None of the staffers who spoke to Gothamist/WNYC said they witnessed sexual harassment or sexual misconduct by the governor."

Powerful people have powerful egos. People who want to be adjacent to power will do just about anything to stay there. People who don't, who see what destruction the grinding gears can do to them - save themselves and get out.

I'm currently watching a series called Damages starring Glenn Close. It ran from 2007-2012, and she plays a successful - and ruthless - top tier lawyer called Patty Hewes who gets the job done. Not always ethically, not always by the rules, and she will destroy anyone who gets in her way. A narcissistic ego the size of a house. The people who work for her jumped at her every word, but they stayed with her for the power and the success they could achieve in her orbit. She knew it, and they knew it.

Just bringing that up because in reading the Gothamist article about Cuomo I kept thinking "Patty Hewes!"

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Response to chia (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 01:35 PM

9. I remember when some people were suprised when people who hated Trump worked for him ...

when he was President. As someone once put it "because that's where the money is".

https://quoteinvestigator.com/2013/02/10/where-money-is/

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #9)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:07 PM

28. It's hard for me to understand people like that. Who will put up with anything in order to keep

the power or the money or the influence. Who (in regards to Trump) might sell their souls, even.

To me, the situation with Cuomo is different. He's old school. Doesn't excuse some less than optimum behavior, but it explains it. There is no purity in politics, there is no saintly politician. We do the best we can with the best we can put in office, and in the gray area between illegal/unethical and questionable/disappointing everyone has their place in the sand where they draw the line.

I'm still waiting for more to come out on Cuomo, and I think he should stay in office until it's all sorted out.

With Trump, anyone who didn't fly out of his administration in the first 100 days - I have zero sympathy for them. They knew. They stayed for the money, the power, the influence.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 11:44 AM

5. "We are withholding all of their names"

Yeah they'd never guess from the description and seating arrangement.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 12:55 PM

7. Weird story. An unnamed co-worker called the intern "sweetie"

and told her to wear stilettos? That sounds neither helpful nor appropriate.

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Response to lapucelle (Reply #7)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 03:09 PM

17. Yeah. That doesn't sound like a Cuomo problem so much as an unnamed co-worker problem.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:09 PM

10. He's been publically humiliated.

His political future is destroyed. He's been made an example of. He's apologized as of today.

Did he act like many male powerful assholes without realizing how unwelcome his behavior actually was? Yes! And he's been shamed for it.

As a woman, I think he's been punished sufficiently.

I think ousting him helps NY republicans though I can't quite name the exact through-line.

Not a big fan of Cuomo's but it's time to stop.

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Response to zentrum (Reply #10)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 03:20 PM

18. At this point, fairly or unfairly, I think his political career is over

If he pushes it and stays in office, he will not be elected to a 4th term. For the good of the state of New York and the Democrat party, he should resign, hand it over to Kathy Hochul and let her run in 2022. The alternative is that a Republican is elected in 2022 and pardons Trump for state crimes. That is unacceptable.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #18)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:11 PM

30. It's not clear what will happen - two years is a long time

And what about Ralph Northam VA governor who was accused of blackface and dressing up in a Klan outfit?

I seem to recall a lot of pressure at the time for him to resign and now nada about it.

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Response to MisterNiceKitty (Reply #30)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 06:42 PM

37. People are more forgiving of what someone does

as a young, foolish college student.

Like I said, fairly or unfairly. But Cuomo had/has a mother, a wife, a girlfriend and 3 daughters. He should think about how he would feel if their boss treated them the way he treated his young female employees.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #37)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 07:58 PM

40. I think I might remember the Northam incident a bit differently

He denied it was him and there was no evidence that it was him either. It's not that people were forgiving.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #18)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 06:35 PM

36. You make some

.....really good points here. Thanks.

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Response to TexasBushwhacker (Reply #18)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 10:49 PM

41. You might have a point!

The alternative is that a Republican is elected in 2022 and pardons Trump for state crimes. That is unacceptable.


Get Cuomo out, then elect a GOP governor in 2022 that will pardon 45.

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Response to IzzaNuDay (Reply #41)


Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 02:28 PM

12. Impeach him if he is unfit. Prosecute him if he committed a crime.


Meanwhile, Cuomo should stay exactly where he is.


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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 03:43 PM

19. I hate guys like this who constantly display how obnoxiously entitled they think they are.

Pure fratboy crap.

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Response to Martin68 (Reply #19)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 07:36 PM

39. The people encouraging it sucks also

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 04:10 PM

21. Sounds familiar. n/t

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 04:46 PM

23. Trump set a new standard in politics

Traditionally, men would resign due to shame and embarrassment, due to scandals that probably would not have resulted in forced removal from office. It was a social norm.

But Trump showed that even at the office of president, you can simply show no shame, stonewall, and keep going. Several times, it was expected that Trump would fall for sure due to scandal, and he simply kept on going. The power of the press had met its match.

Things like this used to upset me, now I just accept it as part of a society that constantly changes.

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Response to Steelrolled (Reply #23)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 05:04 PM

25. Traditionally, men had no fear of being exposed.

The press was well aware of the antics of JFK, Sen. Strom Thurmond, Harding and others but such stuff was not to be made public.

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Response to brooklynite (Original post)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 07:33 PM

38. Fuck all of these people

I found this annoying . The woman that tells another woman what he likes so she fucking goes out and buys heels .

How about saying no .

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Response to JI7 (Reply #38)

Thu Mar 4, 2021, 10:59 PM

42. This was my take as well. Talk about an absence of any smarts --

my response would have been "Uh, no. That is straight out of the 50's and 60's." How are 20-somethings this dense?

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