Cuomo accuser criticizes Yang’s reaction to misogynistic question


NEW YORK — Mayoral candidate Andrew Yang said Sunday he “would never endorse any mistreatment of women,” after coming under criticism from one of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s accusers for his reaction in a video when asked if he “choke(s) b—-es.”

Charlotte Bennett, a former gubernatorial aide who has accused Cuomo of sexual harassment, wrote in an op-ed in the Daily News that Yang showed “cowardice” when he laughed off the vulgar question from a man who approached him.

“New York City should not be led by a person who laughs at jokes that degrade and threaten women, or a man who puts his own momentary comfort and that of a man he’s talking to above the safety and respect of half of his constituents,” Bennett wrote. “New York City should certainly avoid a man whose cowardice and misogyny shine so brightly.”

In the video that circulated online, Yang laughed and backed away, appearing to gesture with his hand that the conversation was over.

“I’m sorry she feels that way,” Yang said at a campaign event in Brooklyn on Sunday when asked about Bennett’s criticism, adding he had not read the op-ed. “Certainly, I would never endorse any mistreatment of women in any context.”

Several of his mayoral rivals also condemned Yang for his reaction in the video, saying that he should have spoken out against the comment.

But Yang again defended his approach on Sunday, saying he was simply trying to extricate himself as quickly as possible.

“I said at the time that I ended the interaction as soon as possible,” he said.

Bennett wrote that Yang instead “should have been straight-faced and unequivocal in his reproach. Failing that, even a simple ‘that’s not funny’ would have sufficed.”

She also criticized Yang for saying he would accept an endorsement from the governor.

“Given all we know, and all we’ve learned, perhaps it should be no surprise that Yang has said recently that he’d still welcome an endorsement from Cuomo,” she said.

“Electing Andrew Yang would be betting on more of what we witnessed this week — toxic masculinity, cowardice and privilege for those who already enjoy it.”

Yang reiterated Sunday that he would accept the governor’s support, but noted he has called on Cuomo to step aside and let Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul assume his duties while he is investigated for sexual harassment and other allegations.

“My job as mayor is going to be to deliver for the people of New York City, and so if there is someone who wants to help New York City get heading in a positive direction, I think it’s someone that I should be open to working with,” Yang said.

Yang, a former Democratic presidential contender, made the comments at a press conference in Bensonhurst, where he received the endorsement of the New York City Asian-American Democratic Club.

Several other mayoral hopefuls also nabbed endorsements on Sunday.

Rep. Greg Meeks, head of the Queens Democratic party, gave his backing to former Wall Street executive Ray McGuire.

“There are many formidable candidates in this race, but there is only one candidate with the right combination of lived experience, passion for this city, detailed plans, and a proven track record of leading through a crisis,” said Meeks, who was joined in the endorsement by state Sen. Leroy Comrie, Assemblymember Vivian Cook and several Queens Democratic district leaders.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams received the endorsement of the Vulcan Society, which represents Black firefighters, the Grand Council of Guardians, an organization of Black law enforcement officers, and the National Latino Peace Officers Association’s NY Charter.

Former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia got a ranked choice voting endorsement from state Sen. Diane Savino, who named Garcia her number 2 choice for mayor. The Staten Island Democrat has already endorsed Adams as her top choice.

“I know very few people who work harder or care more for this city than Kathryn Garcia,” Savino said, praising the foster care plan Garcia released last week. “We need a mayor who knows the ins and outs of municipal management.”

,

NEW YORK — Mayoral candidate Andrew Yang said Sunday he “would never endorse any mistreatment of women,” after coming under criticism from one of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s accusers for his reaction in a video when asked if he “choke(s) b—-es.”

Charlotte Bennett, a former gubernatorial aide who has accused Cuomo of sexual harassment, wrote in an op-ed in the Daily News that Yang showed “cowardice” when he laughed off the vulgar question from a man who approached him.

“New York City should not be led by a person who laughs at jokes that degrade and threaten women, or a man who puts his own momentary comfort and that of a man he’s talking to above the safety and respect of half of his constituents,” Bennett wrote. “New York City should certainly avoid a man whose cowardice and misogyny shine so brightly.”

In the video that circulated online, Yang laughed and backed away, appearing to gesture with his hand that the conversation was over.

“I’m sorry she feels that way,” Yang said at a campaign event in Brooklyn on Sunday when asked about Bennett’s criticism, adding he had not read the op-ed. “Certainly, I would never endorse any mistreatment of women in any context.”

Several of his mayoral rivals also condemned Yang for his reaction in the video, saying that he should have spoken out against the comment.

But Yang again defended his approach on Sunday, saying he was simply trying to extricate himself as quickly as possible.

“I said at the time that I ended the interaction as soon as possible,” he said.

Bennett wrote that Yang instead “should have been straight-faced and unequivocal in his reproach. Failing that, even a simple ‘that’s not funny’ would have sufficed.”

She also criticized Yang for saying he would accept an endorsement from the governor.

“Given all we know, and all we’ve learned, perhaps it should be no surprise that Yang has said recently that he’d still welcome an endorsement from Cuomo,” she said.

“Electing Andrew Yang would be betting on more of what we witnessed this week — toxic masculinity, cowardice and privilege for those who already enjoy it.”

Yang reiterated Sunday that he would accept the governor’s support, but noted he has called on Cuomo to step aside and let Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul assume his duties while he is investigated for sexual harassment and other allegations.

“My job as mayor is going to be to deliver for the people of New York City, and so if there is someone who wants to help New York City get heading in a positive direction, I think it’s someone that I should be open to working with,” Yang said.

Yang, a former Democratic presidential contender, made the comments at a press conference in Bensonhurst, where he received the endorsement of the New York City Asian-American Democratic Club.

Several other mayoral hopefuls also nabbed endorsements on Sunday.

Rep. Greg Meeks, head of the Queens Democratic party, gave his backing to former Wall Street executive Ray McGuire.

“There are many formidable candidates in this race, but there is only one candidate with the right combination of lived experience, passion for this city, detailed plans, and a proven track record of leading through a crisis,” said Meeks, who was joined in the endorsement by state Sen. Leroy Comrie, Assemblymember Vivian Cook and several Queens Democratic district leaders.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams received the endorsement of the Vulcan Society, which represents Black firefighters, the Grand Council of Guardians, an organization of Black law enforcement officers, and the National Latino Peace Officers Association’s NY Charter.

Former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia got a ranked choice voting endorsement from state Sen. Diane Savino, who named Garcia her number 2 choice for mayor. The Staten Island Democrat has already endorsed Adams as her top choice.

“I know very few people who work harder or care more for this city than Kathryn Garcia,” Savino said, praising the foster care plan Garcia released last week. “We need a mayor who knows the ins and outs of municipal management.”

Leave a Reply