New York attorney general resigns amid abuse allegations
Eric Schneiderman said he would step down as state attorney general at the end of business Tuesday after explosive allegations that he physically abused four women.
In recent months, Schneiderman was publicly a supporter of the #MeToo movement, even taking legal action against accused producer Harvey Weinstein.
All of that has now changed overnight after four women publicly accused Schneiderman of physical abuse while dating him. In an article published in the New Yorker, the women allege Schneiderman "repeatedly hit them, often after drinking, frequently in bed and never with their consent.”
One such incident allegedly happened in the Hamptons in 2016. At first, Schneiderman tweeted the incidents were "consensual" and sexual role-playing. Hours later, Schneiderman announced he was resigning as attorney general, saying, “While these allegations are unrelated to my professional conduct or the operations of the office, they will effectively prevent me from leading the office's work at this critical time."
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who called the accusations “shocking and disturbing,” called on Schneiderman to step down.
“I have tremendous accolades for the women who came forward, that is the essence of this #MeToo movement,” said Gov. Cuomo.
Keith Scott, with the Safe Center LI, says Schneiderman's resignation shows the power of the movement.
“Politicians don't represent the movement. It's great to have them backing the movement, but the real people representing it are the survivors and victims of abuse,” says Scott.
The Manhattan District Attorney's Office says it has launched an investigation into the allegations against Schneiderman. Gov. Cuomo has called for an "independent district attorney" to handle the case, noting that Schneiderman had been charged with investigating the Manhattan district attorney’s handling of the Harvey Weinstein accusations.