Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., called on the state legislature to investigate "extraordinarily serious" sexual harassment allegations leveled against New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo by his former staffer Lindsey Boylan.
The "Squad" leader told reporters in Washington, D.C. Friday that survivors "deserve to be heard."
She said the "process for hearing this allegation falls squarely in the state legislature."
At the same time, New York attorney general Letitia James is reviewing a letter from state Republicans to investigate the allegations against Cuomo.
Lindsey Boylan, the former deputy secretary for economic development and special adviser to Cuomo, published an essay on Medium this week accusing the three-term governor of kissing her without consent and consistently making inappropriate, sexually charged comments. She said many other women had shared with her similar experiences.
Boylan is running for Manhattan borough president.
"Let's play strip poker," Boylan said Cuomo remarked on a flight from an event in October 2017.
Boylan, describing an encounter in December 2016, said Cuomo arranged through a handler to meet her in his Albany office and she agreed reluctantly. She said he gave her a tour of his office, "smirked" and showed off a cigar box he said was given to him by former President Bill Clinton while he served as the secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
Boylan said she interpreted that to be an innuendo referencing the affair between Clinton and his then-intern Monica Lewinsky in the mid-1990s.
Boylan said in another incident, this time in Cuomo's New York City office, he kissed her on the lips.
"I was in shock, but I kept walking," Boylan wrote.
"The idea that someone might think I held my high-ranking position because of the Governor's 'crush' on me was more demeaning than the kiss itself."
Another Democratic New York lawmaker, Sen. Kristen Gillibrand, said she’d not read the allegations against Cuomo.
She added: "Well, obviously these allegations are serious and deeply concerning, and anyone has a right to come forward to be heard and to have allegations be investigated.
"Governor Cuomo also has a right to be heard and he has come forward and has denied these allegations. But ultimately the decision will be up to the state," Gillibrand said.
This is the second time in a week Ocasio-Cortez has called for an investigation into the governor. Earlier, she called for an investigation into his handling of nursing homes during the coronavirus pandemic.