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Major Cuomo donors won’t stand up for governor amid sexual harassment scandal

Major donors to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo aren’t standing up for the governor amid sexual harassment allegations from former aides.

Some of Cuomo’s notable donors and their companies have given tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars to his campaign and related committees since his second term began in 2015.

Fox News reached out to 12 major Cuomo donors, including billionaires Steven Roth, Carl Icahn, Ken Langone, Ron Perelman and Stephen Ross, about whether they will continue to give to Cuomo, but didn’t receive responses by press time.

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Two other major Cuomo donors declined to offer their support for Cuomo.   

Billionaire John Catsimatidis, who previously ran for New York City mayor, and his spouse have given Cuomo’s campaign $280,500 since 2002, according to the Public Accountability Initiative.

Catsimatidis stopped short of standing up for Cuomo on Monday when asked about Lindsey Boylan’s and Charlotte Bennett’s sexual harassment allegations against the governor.

In this Feb. 22, 2021 file photo, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference at a COVID-19 vaccination site in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool, File)

In this Feb. 22, 2021 file photo, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks during a news conference at a COVID-19 vaccination site in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, Pool, File)

“Let’s see what the investigations reveal,” Catsimatidis told CNBC. Fox News’ inquiry to Catsimatidis was not returned by press time.

Investor Bernard Schwartz, who has given $70,000 to Cuomo since 2019, told CNBC that Cuomo may not deserve a fourth term.

“I think people who like him and have been with him for a long time are scratching their heads asking, how did he put himself in that position,” Schwartz said. “Unless he comes forward and faces it completely and openly and honestly, he doesn’t deserve a fourth term, even though I like him immensely.”

Fox News also reached out to organizations that have given big bucks to Cuomo — Brookfield Asset Management, the Durst Organization, Altice and the International Union of Operating Engineers — but did not immediately receive responses. Together, those groups have given Cuomo more than $1 million since 2015, according to Politico.

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Fox News also reached out to businessmen Scott Rechler and Mayer Hirsch. Rechler has personally given at least $60,000 to Cuomo, while Hirsch controls LLCs that donated roughly $250,000 to Cuomo in 2015, Politico reported.

“Mr. Hirsch won’t be commenting on any story,” Chaim Oberlander, general manager of Kiryas Joel Poultry, which lists Hirsch as its president, told Fox News.

The New York Attorney General’s Office began an independent investigation of Boylan and Bennett’s accusations on Monday. Cuomo’s office has denied wrongdoing in both cases.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks to the press at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, on March 27, 2020. (Photo by BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP via Getty Images)

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo speaks to the press at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, on March 27, 2020. (Photo by BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP via Getty Images)
(BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP via Getty Images)

Boylan accused Cuomo of unwanted touching and an unwanted kiss, leading to her resignation in 2018. 

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Bennett, who was described by The New York Times as “an executive assistant and health policy adviser in the Cuomo administration until she left in November,” alleges that Cuomo “asked her questions about her sex life, whether she was monogamous in her relationships and if she had ever had sex with older men.”

Fox News’ Ronn Blitzer, Greg Norman and Joseph A. Wulfsohn and FOX Business’ Megan Henney, Jonathan Garber and Thomas Barrabi contributed to this report.

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