Before he became governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo once refused to a hire a woman because she was not "pretty enough," one of his accusers alleged in an exclusive interview with the New York Post.
Former Cuomo press aide Karen Hinton, who has accused Cuomo of getting physically "aroused" when he hugged her "too tightly" and for "too long" in a Los Angeles hotel room in December 2000, said the woman Cuomo allegedly declined for a job due to her looks had "worked on Capitol Hill for years.
"I knew her, she had a very good understanding of Capitol Hill politics and policy," Hinton, who worked for Cuomo when he was housing and urban development secretary under President Bill Clinton, told the Post.
"She came in for an interview and I sat in since I had recommended her, and he said to me after, 'No, I don't think so,'" Hinton told the Post.
"I asked, 'Why?' He said, 'She's not pretty enough. I don't like the way she looks.'"
Hinton, married to former Cuomo administration official Howard Glaser, also told the Post that Cuomo made light of Clinton's 1998 impeachment trial, saying he thought the president's sex scandal with intern Monica Lewinsky was "funny."
"I remember him laughing about the Monica Lewinsky situation, not because he didn't believe her — he did — but because he thought it was funny," she told the Post. "There were jokes made about it because of the cigars."
A report last week from New York Attorney General Letitia James excoriated Cuomo for creating a "hostile work environment" and detailed myriad allegations from 11 other women of sexual harassment, misconduct, and even an account of potentially criminal sexual assault in the governor's Albany office.
The latter accusation came from Brittany Commisso and is now the subject of an Albany County sheriff's criminal investigation. Commisso was known as "Executive Assistant #1" in James' report, but she decided to come forward publicly after the inquiry was announced over the weekend.
The alleged hotel room incident Hinton described was mentioned twice in James' report, but because it did not occur during Cuomo's time as governor, it was not investigated in-depth.
Cuomo, a Democrat, has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing but did apologize for making women "uncomfortable" earlier this year. He has not discussed any intention of stepping down, despite the criminal inquiry or the New York State Legislature considering an impeachment.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio accused Cuomo of demanding he fire Hinton when she was the mayor's press secretary, calling Cuomo a "Shakespearean" villain, according to the Post.
Cuomo's office did not immediately respond to the Post's request for comment.
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