CNN‘s Chris Cuomo shared a fawning and cringeworthy exchange with Don Lemon as they praised each other’s kindness and friendship while ignoring revelations Chris advised his disgraced brother Andrew on his response to the former governor’s sex harassment scandal.
Bombshell documents released on Monday by the office of the New York Attorney General, Letitia James, show that Chris exchanged dozens of text messages with his brother Andrew’s top aide, Melissa DeRosa. Chris Cuomo had told investigators under oath that they only had ‘irregular contact.’
Meanwhile, Chris and Lemon said Monday they were thankful for each other’s presence in their lives as they discussed their respective Thanksgivings in a hand-off branded ‘nauseating’ by viewers.
Lemon told his co-host: ‘It’s good to see you, I know you had a great Thanksgiving, I hope you did. I missed you.
‘I’m grateful for your friendship and your love. I think you’re fantastic, one of the kindest people I know on this planet.
‘There you go, I meant every word.’
Cuomo replied: ‘I’m thankful for you in my life, it was great to see you having a good time, I like the Friendsgiving, our tradition.
‘For us, it was great to be in the house for the first time and it was all good, man, one memory at a time, it’s always better with you but it’s good to know you were having fun where you were.’
Viewers slammed the pair for not mentioning the growing scandal around Chris, who had previously insisted he was never deeply involved in his brother Andrew’s sexual misconduct allegations probe.
CNN’s Chris Cuomo shared a fawning and cringeworthy exchange with Don Lemon as they praised each other’s kindness and friendship
Newly-released texts from CNN host Chris Cuomo (right) reveal he helped strategize brother Andrew Cuomo’s (left) response to the sexual harassment scandal earlier this year
CNN said their star host’s fate will be decided in the ‘next several days’ after damning texts showed how he helped his brother and used sources to dig up ‘dirt’ on accusers – moves that drew the ire of the former governor’s first accuser.
The 51-year-old news anchor used his show on Monday to instead discuss Omicron, the newest COVID variant, and the row between far right congresswoman Lauren Boebert from Colorado and Ilhan Omar, the Muslim congresswoman representing Minnesota.
He then discussed ‘smash-and-grab robberies’ across the country and rising crime.
When he was criticized for failing to mention the scandal, CNN’s media commentator Brian Stelter tweeted: ‘For what it’s worth, when Chris Cuomo addressed his actions on the air back in August, he said “this will be my final word on it,” and he hasn’t addressed the matter on TV since.’
In a statement to DailyMail.com on Monday evening, CNN said: ‘The thousands of pages of additional transcripts and exhibits that were released today by the NY Attorney General deserve a thorough review and consideration.
‘We will be having conversations and seeking additional clarity about their significance as they relate to CNN over the next several days.’
Viewers slammed the pair for not mentioning the growing scandal around Chris who had previously insisted he had never been deeply involved in his brother Andrew’s sex probe
CNN said their star host’s fate will be decided in the ‘next several days’ after damning texts showed how he helped his brother
Chris said during his Monday show: ‘I hope your Thanksgiving was a reminder for everybody of the good people, and the good things, in your life.’
‘Lord knows we could use the help, right?’
He began his show with a discussion of Omicron.
‘I will take a little bit of a different take than a lot of other media. I don’t know that it helped, this Thanksgiving holiday, to have the news media blasting word of this new variant, Omicron.
‘Of course the information is news. But the timing, the tone, the hype, goes way beyond that which is justified by the urgency at this point.
‘We don’t know that much.’
He said the ‘more questions than answers’ presentation was because it was new, and it was being spun as being deeply troubling.
‘They don’t know symptoms – anecdotally, a clinician said they were mild,’ Chris continued.
‘Instead, there is too much talk about not knowing if it’s resistant. We don’t know if it’s worse than Delta.’
He lamented ‘the feverish concern.’
Chris’s decision on Monday not to discuss the saga about his involvement in his brother’s situation came despite previously having vowed to be open with his viewers.
The New York-born presenter has had a difficult time trying to judge when to discuss the scandal and when to ignore it. On March 1, he said he was aware of the accusations about his brother, after a third woman came forward to accuse him, but could not report on it.
‘Obviously I am aware of what is going on with my brother,’ he said at the time.
‘And obviously I cannot cover it because he is my brother. Now, of course CNN has to cover it. They have covered it extensively and they will continue to do so.’
He then moved on, having thanked his audience ‘for being straight with me, and I’ve always been straight with you.’ He said he ‘always cared very deeply about these issues, and profoundly so.’
Several weeks of extremely uncomfortable handovers then ensued, as Chris refused to discuss the news – which at the time was a big story – while his co-hosts before and after discussed it extensively.
Despite having said he did not want to talk about it, when news of his assistance for his brother emerged in May, Chris apologized to viewers and colleagues at the time.
When the New York Attorney General’s report was published on August 3, Chris Cuomo pointedly refused to discuss it – even while it was the lead item on his colleagues’ shows.
On August 16, shortly after Andrew resigned as governor, Chris addressed it again, defending his behavior during the sex harassment scandal engulfing his brother – telling CNN viewers that he was not an adviser to ‘Governor Andrew Cuomo,’ but rather: ‘I’m a brother.’
Chris’ stated intention of ignoring the story and then being forced repeatedly to address it has led to the anchor having a torrid year, with frequent calls for him to be fired.
Lindsey Boylan, the first of 12 woman to publicly accuse the former governor of sexual harassment, shared a scathing take on the documents that revealed the text messages on Monday.
‘It’s almost as if a whole system is set up to protect powerful men from accountability,’ she tweeted.
‘Two things I will never fully understand: how many people can let abuse after abuse happen without speaking up and how many people need to see a group of women cry on camera to believe we are telling the truth about that abuse.’
Boylan, a former Cuomo adviser, came forward publicly last December on Twitter to claim that the governor had sexually harassed her, made comments on her looks and at one point asked if she would play a game of strip poker with him.
Text messages released by James’ office detailed Cuomo’s role in his brother’s public relations crisis as he told senior members of the governor’s team, ‘we are making mistakes we cant afford.’
In one text, on March 3, he also asked DeRosa to ‘please let me help with prep’.
Lindsey Boylan, the first of 12 woman to publicly accuse the former governor of sexual harassment, shared a scathing take on the documents Monday
She said on Twitter: ‘it’s almost as if a whole system is set up to protect powerful white men from accountability’
He also crafted at least two statements for his brother, one regarding accuser Charlotte Bennett’s claims, and another on Andrew’s refusal to resign. Lines from the latter statement he provided by text were used by his brother.
Texts also revealed Chris Cuomo used his connections to find out about accusers, telling DeRosa he had ‘a lead on the wedding girl,’ in reference to Anna Ruch, who told The New York Times the governor became ‘aggressive’ toward her during a September 2019 wedding.
Other texts show that he asked another journalist for information on a story being written by Ronan Farrow for the New Yorker, which centered around Boylan – whose story prompted other woman to come forward.
Texts also revealed Cuomo used his connections to find out about accusers, telling DeRosa he ‘a lead on the wedding girl,’ in reference to Anna Ruch (left), who told The New York Times the governor became ‘aggressive toward her during a September 2019 wedding
Melissa DeRosa, former secretary to the governor, exchanged dozens of messages with Chris Cuomo as her boss’s sexual harassment scandal was unfolding
She said he cupped her face in his hands and asked: ‘Can I kiss you?’
Cuomo – who earns $6 million annually at CNN, according to Celebrity Net Worth – later told investigators that he reached out to a ‘non-journalistic’ source while fishing for information on the wedding incident.
He also told investigators that as the scandal exploded, he reached out other journalists to learn whether other complainants might come forward.
The text exchange at one point turned to Farrow, who won the Pulitzer Prize and helped launch the #MeToo movement after his reporting on disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein.
Texts show Andrew Cuomo’s team was worried about an article journalist Ronan Farrow (pictured) was working on, and asked his brother to look into it
Pages of text exchanges between Chris Cuomo and Andrew Cuomo’s top aid Melissa DeRosa were released by the New York Attorney General’s office Monday. Investigators asked Cuomo during the investigation about a March 2021 text where he wrote to DeRosa: ‘If Ronan has nothing better – better than Boylan, that’s a great sign’
Investigators asked Cuomo during the investigation about a March 2021 text where he wrote to DeRosa: ‘If Ronan has nothing better – better than Boylan, that’s a great sign’.
He later elaborated to investigators that ‘the concern was that Ronan always has more people. You know, I mean, that’s part of his currency as a journalist, is that people come to him to expand understandings. I know he has his critics. But, to me, that’s when he’s at his best.
‘So the assumption was he must have new people if he’s waiting so long to have written about this. And then he didn’t. So, what the context is specifically is: I had heard that all he was writing – the only person he was writing about was Lindsey Boylan.’
Chris Cuomo told investigators that his brother’s team was ‘very concerned’ with the impending story and that the piece was discussed after it was published on March 18.
‘When Ronan Farrow writes, something, people in the media are going to talk about it,’ he said.
He said he discussed the article with his brother after it was published March 18.
‘[The conversation was] just asking him, you know, how how he felt about it, what was in it,’ Chris Cuomo told investigators.
‘And him asking me what did I think the impact of it was.
‘He said that he didn’t think the article was fair, that she was being propped up and – you know, that’s it.’
In another exchange, DeRosa asked Chris Cuomo about a ‘rumor going around from politico 1-2 more ppl coming out tomorrow’.
She also asked him to check his sources, to which he responded, ‘no one has heard yet’.
Anna Ruch, now 33, met Andrew Cuomo at her friends’ wedding in September 2019. He was photographed cupping her face
Though he admitted to researching forthcoming accusers, he vehemently denied to investigators setting out to discredit them.
‘I would never do oppo research on anybody alleging anything like this,’ he told investigators.
‘I’m not in the oppo research business. I don’t tolerate a lot of oppo research on any level.’
When asked to define ‘oppo research’, he said: ‘the idea of trying to find ways to disparage people who come forward with allegations like this is not what I’m about.’
The text exchanges contradict Chris Cuomo’s claims to investigators that he had ‘irregular contact’ with DeRosa. His testimony was subject to the penalty of perjury.
He on March 12 sent her a text, dictating how the governor should respond to calls for his resignation.
‘READ THIS,’ Cuomo said. ‘I will not resign. I cannot resign. I am in a different position and I am working with a different standard than these other politicians I understand why they have to say what they are saying.
‘I understand the political pressure I understand the stakes of political warfare, and that’s what this is… And I understand the conformity that can be forced by cancel culture.’
Discussions centered around Andrew Cuomo stepping down prompted the governor to consider doing so in March, Cuomo said.
‘I told him, ‘If you have done nothing that you believe was wrong, don’t resign,’ Cuomo told investigators. ‘Because resigning is you saying that you did something wrong. Don’t do it.’
Pages of texts show Cuomo strategizing the former governor’s response to the allegations with DeRosa.
In one exchange he questions why one of his statements on Charlotte Bennett’s claims were not used, asking DeRosa: ‘What happened to the statement?’
He sent a follow-up message March 1.
It read: ‘Here’s what he should have said: ‘I have carefully considered Ms. Bennett’s statement and my own conduct. I don’t dispute that our conversation was as she reports. I also do not dispute that my words and supervisory position may have created a hostile work environment. I apologize to Ms. Bennett and will promptly seek to personally communicate my apology to her. I also apologize to the people of New York State, who have a right to better conduct from their Governor. This will not happen again.”
Cuomo also sent DeRosa a later statement which his brother used lines from in responding to the allegations against him.
Pages of texts messages released by AG Letitia James shows how Chris Cuomo strategized with his brother Andrew’s office, specifically with top aide Melissa DeRosa
REVEALED: Chris Cuomo’s ‘friend’ told Alec Baldwin to post 14-minute rant on cancel culture to back up Andrew Cuomo
CNN host Chris Cuomo told investigators from the Attorney General’s office that he had tried to keep 30 Rock star Alec Baldwin from ranting about cancel culture and meddling in favor of his disgraced ex-governor brother.
Bombshell documents released Monday by New York AG Letitia James’ office on Monday show that it was the ex-governor’s then-aide, Melissa DeRosa, who alerted his brother to Baldwin’s 14-minute rant published on DailyMail.com where he hit out at sexual misconduct allegations leveled at Andrew Cuomo.
In a text, Cuomo responded that ‘my friend asked him [Baldwin] to do it … Very close to him.’
During subpoenaed testimony with investigators on July 15, Cuomo said he asked his friend to tell Baldwin, who is now facing his own controversy after fatally shooting ‘Rust’ cinematographer Halyna Hutchins, to stay out of the scandal.
‘I said, Tell him to stay out of it,’ Chris Cuomo told investigators. ‘It’s not necessary.
He said, ‘Well, he’s going to do it. And I think it’s a good idea for him to do it. He wants to talk about these things.’
DeRosa said during her deposition that she talked to Cuomo ‘pretty regularly’ during the scandal and the kept firing over advice that nobody asked for.
‘Chris sends me a lot of things a lot of the time,’ she told investigators. ‘Half of it I don’t engage in. He gives unsolicited 22 advice.’
Cuomo told investigators that he urged his brother to be truthful ahead of a March 3 press conference.
‘Every time somebody has to ask you a question about something specific, it’s an opportunity you had to get out in front of this that wasn’t taken,’ Cuomo said. ‘And that this is not a competition. This is not you versus the accuser. And you don’t phrase it that way, and you avoid any implication of that.
‘That was my biggest set of concerns for him in terms of how this was handled. Everything else to me was just verbiage.’
CNN previously banned Cuomo from helping his brother plot how to respond to allegations he sexually harassed 11 women, and it is unclear if him telling Andrew to resign could be considered a breach of that prohibition.
In August, Chris Cuomo used his CNN show to defend his behavior during the sex harassment scandal engulfing his brother – telling viewers that he was not an adviser to Governor Andrew Cuomo, but rather: ‘I’m a brother.’
‘I tried to do the right thing and I just want you all to know that,’ he said.
Both CNN and its star journalist have faced criticism for his interactions with his older brother.
Once Andrew was accused of sexual harassment, Chris began assisting him with media strategy – to the anger of CNN colleagues, including Jake Tapper, who said it put them in a difficult situation.
In May, when news of his assistance emerged, Chris apologized to viewers and colleagues.
And when the New York attorney general’s report was published on August 3 – prompting his brother to resign – Chris Cuomo pointedly refused to discuss it, even while it was the lead item on his colleagues’ shows.
He said he did not, this time, advise his brother on media strategy.
‘I wasn’t in control of anything,’ Cuomo said on the air.
‘I was there to listen and offer my take. And my advice to my brother was simple and consistent – own what you did, tell people what you’ll try to do to be better, be contrite.
‘Finally, accept that it doesn’t matter what you intended, what matters is how your actions and your words are perceived.’
While he never imagined he would have to do it, ‘I did advise my brother to resign when the time came,’ he said.
Last week, Andrew Cuomo was condemned as a sex pest who committed multiple impeachable offenses in a new official report.
The investigation, by New York’s state assembly’s judiciary committee, was released November 22 and found ‘overwhelming evidence’ that Cuomo sexually harassed 12 women.
The 12th victim, mother-of-three Sherry Vill, previously came forward to detail Cuomo’s alleged manhandling and forcible kissing while touring her flood-damaged home in 2017.
She was not included in James’s August report, but the judiciary committee said it had since corroborated her claims.
Pages of text exchanges between Chris Cuomo and Andrew Cuomo’s top aid Melissa DeRosa were released by the New York Attorney General’s office Monday
The report released by the Attorney General’s office on Monday also revealed that in one text message, Cuomo said ‘his friend’ asked actor Alec Baldwin to post commentary online, referencing Baldwin’s 14-minute Instagram rant earlier this year where he hit out and defended due process amid sexual misconduct allegations leveled at Andrew Cuomo and Woody Allen.
‘My friend asked him to do it,’ Cuomo said in a message to DeRosa. ‘Very close to him.’
During subpoenaed testimony with investigators July 15, Cuomo said he asked his friend to tell Baldwin to stay out of the scandal.
‘I said, Tell him to stay out of it,’ Cuomo told investigators.
‘It’s not necessary. He said, ‘Well, he’s going to do it. And I think it’s a good idea for him to do it. He wants to talk about these things.”
Cuomo said toward the end of the deposition that his brother feels guilty for dragging him into the mess.
‘My brother has a lot of regret that I’ve had this negatively affect me,’ he said.
‘Doesn’t feel good to have your family be scrutinized for something that’s about you, let alone when that scrutiny is patently unfair and being weaponized in ways to hurt you as the primary, you know, which is what Andrew is, and to hurt me. And I know he feels that. And it hurts him.’