Chris Cuomo, 51, is speaking out about his brother Andrew Cuomo resigning as New York governor for the first time since the latter announced the groundbreaking news on Aug. 10. The television journalist addressed the situation in the closing remarks on his CNN show, Cuomo Prime Time on the night of Aug. 16 and explained he tried to do the right thing in a “situation” that ended up being “unlike anything I could have imagined.”
"It was a unique situation being a brother to a politician in a scandal and being part of the media," @ChrisCuomo says. "I tried to do the right thing, and I just want you-all to know that." pic.twitter.com/oSWnxNImwG
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) August 17, 2021
“I never covered my brother’s troubles because I obviously had a conflict,” he said during the live broadcast. He further explained that when he spoke with 63-year-old Andrew about the sexual harassment scandal that led to the resignation he was acting not as an adviser, but as “a brother” and gave him some advice. “Own what you did, tell people what you’ll do to be better, be contrite, and finally, accept that it doesn’t matter what you intended,” he told him. “What matters is how your actions and words were perceived.”
Chris also admitted he did “urge my brother to resign when the time came,” but stayed defiant regarding conflicts of interest. “My position has never changed,” he said. “I never misled anyone about the information I was delivering or not delivering on this program. I never attacked, nor encouraged anyone to attack, any woman who came forward… I never influenced or attempted to control CNN’s coverage of my family.”
He also said that when he was asked to stop talking strategy with Andrew’s advisors he “acknowledged it was a mistake, I apologized to my colleagues, and I stopped, and I meant it.”
Chris’ comments about Andrew come less than a week after the governor announced his intention to resign at a press conference. He also apologized to his accusers and his family during the announcement. “Given the circumstances, the best way I can help now is if I step aside and let government get back to governing, and that’s what I’ll do, because I work for you,” he said.
He also went on to reveal that Kathy Hochul, Lieutenant Governor of New York, would be taking his place. “Doing the right thing is doing the right thing for you, because as we say, ‘it’s not about me; it’s about we.’ Kathy Hochul, my lieutenant governor, is smart and competent. This transition must be seamless,” he explained before mentioning the spread of the Delta variant of COVID-19. “We have a lot going on. I’m very worried about the Delta variant and so should you be, but she will come up to speak quickly, and my resignation will be effective in 14 days.”
Andrew held the headline-making press conference a week after an investigation found evidence of his sexual harassment against 11 women.