Documents released by the New York Attorney General’s office on Monday reveal that CNN host Chris Cuomo offered to use his media “sources” to dig up information about women who had accused his brother, then-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, of sexual harassment.
“The thousands of pages of additional transcripts and exhibits that were released today by the NY Attorney General deserve a thorough review and consideration,” CNN said in a statement on Monday afternoon.
“We will be having conversations and seeking additional clarity about their significance as they relate to CNN over the next several days,” the network added.
“Please let me help with the prep,” Chris Cuomo said in a text message to his brother’s top aide Melissa DeRosa in March. He also pleaded with DeRosa and other advisors to “trust me,” telling them to “stop hiding shit” from him. “We are making mistakes we can’t afford,” the CNN host further complained.
After The New York Times reported in March that Andrew Cuomo had made unwanted advances on a woman at a wedding, the CNN anchor told DeRosa: “I have a lead on the wedding girl.”
In his July interview with investigators looking into the ex-governor’s sexual misconduct allegations, Chris Cuomo said he regularly checked with “sources” regarding published or upcoming stories on his brother’s accusers.
“I would—when asked, I would reach out to sources, other journalists, to see if they had heard of anybody else coming out,” the Cuomo Prime Time host told investigators. Text messages to DeRosa also show that Chris Cuomo composed and reviewed written statements on his brother’s behalf.
While the veteran journalist had already acknowledged that he was an unofficial adviser to his brother throughout the scandal, and later said it was a “mistake” amid criticism that he had taken part in official strategy calls, these previously unseen transcripts reveal that his role was far larger than he had previously suggested.
A spokesman for former governor Andrew Cuomo said that “Tish James continues abusing her government power to leverage her political future” by releasing transcripts over time. “Today’s manipulated release of hand picked witness testimony with selective redactions is typical,” the statement continued.