State Senate leader still calling for Cuomo to resign, but says budget will go forward

Mar 16, 2021

New York State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said Tuesday that she’s determined to steer the Senate through budget negotiations with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, even though the governor has ignored her calls for him to resign over a sexual harassment scandal.

Stewart-Cousins and most of the majority-party Democrats in the chamber have called for Cuomo to leave after multiple women alleged that he sexually harassed them or behaved inappropriately.

New York State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins
Credit File image/New York Senate

Nevertheless, she said, the state budget -- which includes plans to help New Yorkers beat the COVID-19 pandemic and improve the economy -- has to be finished by the March 31 deadline, and she will need to work with the governor’s office to do it.

“I’ve made my opinions clear, I think the governor should resign, but I also understand that it is important that we do our job, and that will always be my focus,” Stewart-Cousins said.

She hinted that the legislature may have more power to get its own proposals enacted this year, including a two-house agreement on a $7 billion package of tax increases for the wealthy and corporations, which is not in the governor’s plan.