Chris Cuomo's fate has been decided at CNN. According to the New York Times, the cable news network has fired the brother of former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The decision comes after new details surfaced connected to the now-former CNN host helping his brother during the latter's sex scandal earlier this year.
"Chris Cuomo was suspended earlier this week pending further evaluation of new information that came to light about his involvement with his brother's defense," CNN's statement reads, via the NYT. "We retained a respected law firm to conduct the review, and have terminated him, effective immediately. While in the process of that review, additional information has come to light. Despite the termination, we will investigate as appropriate."
Breaking News: CNN has fired Chris Cuomo on Saturday following the network’s investigation into his efforts to help his brother, Andrew Cuomo, fight off multiple sexual harassment allegations. https://t.co/0QISk1LUr7— The New York Times (@nytimes) December 4, 2021
The decision comes after Cuomo was suspended indefinitely by the network after new texts and messages released by the New York attorney general showed far more direct involvement of the anchor in his brother's efforts. Before this release, CNN head Jeff Zucker didn't take disciplinary action against the host for his actions, though highly unethical during a time of growing resentment toward the news media.
Cuomo's decision didn't sit well with the rest of his CNN co-workers, with many, according to The Times, speaking out in private and others going public. Jake Tapper was one of the more vocal critics, saying Cuomo had "put us in a bad spot." "I cannot imagine a world in which anybody in journalism thinks that that was appropriate," Tapper said.
The Times adds that Cuomo was one of the first major hires under Zucker's leadership at the network in 2013. The morning show New Day was built around Cuomo and his experience with ABC News. While it would seem that the recent controversy is the first time this behavior was present, complaints from 2013 show complaints after Cuomo interviewed his brother on New Day.
The pair became a fixture during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic due to Andrew Cuomo's high visibility due to New York's response to the virus. Cuomo would appear on his brother's show and help score some ratings wins with their banter and reported "authenticity and relatability and vulnerability," according to Zucker to the New York Times. "That's what the brothers Cuomo are giving us right now."
Despite these moments, the darker reality for both siblings became apparent earlier this year with Andrew Cuomo's sexual harassment scandal and controversy over his handling of nursing homes during the height of the pandemic. And through his brother's trials, Chris Cuomo has also lost his career and likely his respect within the news industry.
The former CNN host released a statement shortly after the firing was confirmed, sharing his disappointment and thanking the staff on his prime-time show. "Let me say now as disappointing as this is, I could not be prouder of the team at Cuomo Prime Time and the work we did as CNN's #1 show in the most competitive timeslot," Cuomo wrote. "I owe them all and will that group of special people who did really important work."