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De Blasio and nearly 60 New York Democrats demand Gov. Cuomo resign

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, assemblywoman Jessica González-Rojas (D-NY) and over 55 additional New York legislatures are calling for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s resignation because of ongoing sexual harassment allegations and a cover-up of Covid death data by his administration.

“I join almost 60 state legislators, including Senators and Assemblymembers who believe it’s time to restore the public’s trust in our leadership. This is what’s best of our state. Governor Cuomo, resign now,” González-Rojas wrote in a statement released on Thursday.

The demand for Cuomo’s resignation comes one day after the Albany Times Union reported that a staff member of Cuomo’s had accused him of aggressively groping her in the Governor’s mansion last year. Six women have now come forward accusing Cuomo of inappropriate behavior.

Additionally, Cuomo is under fire for the reported cover-up of the total nursing home death toll.

“As legislators and as New Yorkers we all must decide what is best for the future of New York State,” the statement reads. “The budget, the fight against COVID-19, and restarting the economy all demand clear and trustworthy leadership. In light of the Governor’s admission of inappropriate behavior and the findings of altered data on nursing home COVID-19 deaths he has lost the confidence of the public and the state legislature, rendering him ineffective in this time of most urgent need.”

“We have a Lieutenant Governor who can step in and lead for the remainder of the term, and this is what is best for New Yorkers in this critical time,” the statement added.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-NY) said in a statement Thursday that he will be meeting with members in conference today to discuss “potential paths forward.”

A resolution to impeach Cuomo was introduced earlier this week by Republican members of the Assembly. Minority Leader Will Barclay said that “we believe the time has come” to impeach the New York Gov.

Under the New York Constitution, an impeachment of Cuomo would require a simple majority vote of the 150-member state Assembly, which is currently composed of 106 Democrats, 43 Republicans and one independent.

Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy

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Biden frees Venezuelan President Maduro’s drug dealing relatives in prisoner swap

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Joe Biden

President Biden freed two of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s relatives Saturday in exchange for seven jailed Americans. The two nephews of Maduro’s wife Cilia Flores, had been convicted in the United States for drug dealing and sentenced to 18 years in prison, according to the BBC.

According to the report, the swap was in exchange for five American oil executives. Those Americans were “exchanged for two of Mr Maduro’s wife’s nephews, who were serving 18-year sentences in the US on drug charges,” the officials told the BBC. Maduro’s nephews were convicted under the Trump administration and the Venezuelan government claims that they were “unjustly” jailed in the United States.

In a statement from the White House Saturday, Biden said the American’s were  “wrongfully detained.”  He said the American’s  would soon be reunited with their relatives, according to reports.

“Today, we celebrate that seven families will be whole once more. To all the families who are still suffering and separated from their loved ones who are wrongfully detained – know that we remain dedicated to securing their release,” the Biden statement added.

Meanwhile, 13 Republican members of Congress sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, requesting more information on “the intelligence report” that alleges Maduro is emptying his prisons and allowing them to head to the United States in the caravans that crossing the porous border.

The letter states that the report warns Border Patrol agents to be on the look-out for “violent criminals from Venezuela among the migrant caravans heading towards the U.S.-Mexico border.”

“It has been widely reported that the Venezuelan regime, under the control of Nicolás Maduro Moros, is deliberately releasing violent prisoners early, including inmates convicted of ‘murder, rape, and extortion,’ and pushing them to join caravans heading to the United States,” the letter states.

You can follow Sara A. Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC.

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