The Long Road to Possibly Impeaching Cuomo

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Andrew M. Cuomo could become the first governor of New York to be impeached in more than a century.

But before that can happen, two investigations into Mr. Cuomo’s conduct are likely to play out, and would-be impeachers will need to navigate the shoals of Albany’s political traditions and the state’s relatively ill-defined impeachment process.

[The governor could be impeached. Here’s how it would happen.]

Here’s what you need to know:

Mr. Cuomo is currently under investigation by the Judiciary Committee of the State Assembly and by Letitia James, the state’s attorney general.

Ms. James’s investigation is focused narrowly on several sexual harassment allegations made against Mr. Cuomo.

The Assembly’s investigation will have a broader purview. It will consider the sexual harassment claims, a controversy over how Mr. Cuomo and his administration handled data about coronavirus-related nursing home deaths and other topics to determine whether the governor has committed impeachable offenses.

The state Constitution does not specify grounds for impeachment.

Lawmakers will grapple with the question after reviewing the Assembly’s report, which is likely to stick to the facts and not recommend a course of action, a person familiar with the matter told my colleagues Jesse McKinley and Luis Ferré-Sadurní.

But the results of the report could take months, Assemblyman Charles D. Lavine, Democratic chair of the Judiciary Committee, said Tuesday.

It is difficult to say exactly how impeachment will play out.

The Assembly would need to pass an impeachment measure, and then the State Senate would try Mr. Cuomo before judges from the Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.

A two-thirds majority vote in the Senate is required to convict. If the governor were to be removed, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul would become the first woman to hold the office in state history.

Most of New York’s Democratic congressional delegation, including Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Chuck Schumer, have called for Mr. Cuomo to resign.

The governor has defiantly rejected those calls and pleaded with New Yorkers to await the results of the investigations before passing judgment.


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Relief is on the way for restaurants and bars around the country, after a year during which far too many of our favorite eateries closed.

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund, a $28.6 billion grant program to help abate the closings of small restaurants, bars and restaurant groups, is part of the $1.9 trillion stimulus package recently passed by Congress.

The Independent Restaurant Coalition, a group of chefs and restaurateurs from around the country, lobbied Congress for the legislation.

“We were a bunch of businesses that did the same thing, but we didn’t really find a unifying voice” before the pandemic, Amanda Cohen, the chef and owner of Dirt Candy on the Lower East Side, told my colleague Brett Anderson. “The reality is that the way to make change is like this, through policy.”

It is too late for the 110,000 restaurants and bars the National Restaurant Association said had closed around the country.

New York City’s restaurant scene, one of the most vibrant in the nation, suffered during the pandemic as restaurateurs spent months relegated to takeout and outdoor dining. Even now that indoor dining has resumed, with capacity increased to 50 percent in the city — and popular restaurants have been jammed outdoors in the recent warm weather — the list of restaurants that succumbed grows ever longer.

Melissa Fleischut, the president and chief executive of the New York State Restaurant Association, told me that the National Restaurant Association had found that about one out of every six restaurants in the country had closed, and that “it could be even worse in the city,” but the coming funds meant hope.

“I think that it’s really a bright, shining star on the horizon, that could help them pay off debt that has piled up during the pandemic, and just get them back on their feet,” Ms. Fleischut said.

It’s Wednesday — savor it.


Dear Diary:

I sold pizza from a stand at the New York World’s Fair in 1964. I charged a quarter a slice — highway robbery! — and most of my transactions were uneventful.

Sometimes, though, when I would get down to two or three mismatched slices, I would get an order for just that many.

Initially, I handed them over as is. That invariably led to complaints about one slice being so much smaller than the others.

Eventually, I devised a solution. I trimmed the larger slices to match the smallest one so that they matched and served them that way. Then I would hold up the extra bit I had just cut off.

“By the way,” I’d say, “here’s a little free bonus slice just for you.”

Presto! Complaints turned into tips.

— Fred Essenwein


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