Former CNN anchor Chris Cuomo said the past week has been "extraordinarily difficult" for his family in a new statement published hours after he missed Monday's broadcast of his SiriusXM radio show. Cuomo, the younger brother of former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, also stepped down from SiriusXM in his latest statement. CNN fired Cuomo on Saturday, following revelations that he was more involved in helping his brother dring Cuomo's sex scandal earlier this year. Cuomo is facing his own allegation of sexual misconduct as well.
"The way my time ended at CNN was hard," Cuomo wrote Monday. "While I have a thick skin, I also have a family, for whom the past week has been extraordinarily difficult. So, right now, I have to take a step back and focus on what comes next." While he decides what that next step is, he will no longer be doing his SiriusXM radio show. He thanked SiriusXM for its support and sent his "sincere appreciation" to his loyal listeners. "I will miss our conversations a great deal – but I look forward to being back in touch with you all in the future," he wrote.
Last week, New York Attorney General Letitia James released thousands of new pages of evidence from her office's investigation into the sexual misconduct allegations against Andrew. The documents revealed more direct contact between Cuomo and his brother's senior aides than previously thought. CNN first suspended him indefinitely, then fired him on Saturday. Cuomo called his firing "disappointing" and offered no further comment on why he helped his brother. He instead referred to his past comments, including his statements on CNN in August.
After Cuomo was fired, the New York Times reported that Cuomo faced a sexual misconduct allegation himself. Employment lawyer Debra S. Katz reportedly told the network that a former junior colleague at another network made the allegation against Cuomo. It is not clear if this allegation played a role in CNN firing Cuomo after the allegations about his work with his brother's aides. Katz also represented one of the women who accused Andrew of sexual harassment in February.
"Based on the report we received regarding Chris's conduct with his brother's defense, we had cause to terminate. When new allegations came to us this week, we took them seriously, and saw no reason to delay taking immediate action," CNN told the New York Times Saturday night. Cuomo's spokesman, Steven Goldberg, said the misconduct allegations are "not true."
Katz told the Times her client came forward in response to Cuomo's on-air comments about the allegations his brother faced. Cuomo "fully stands by his on-air statements about his connection to these issues, both professionally and in a profoundly personal way," Goldberg said in response. "If the goal in making these false and unvetted accusations was to see Mr. Cuomo punished by CNN, that may explain his unwarranted termination."
In September, Shelley Ross, who worked with Cuomo at ABC News, accused Cuomo of sexual harassment in a New York Times op-ed. The former executive producer accused Cuomo of grabbing her buttocks during a party in 2005, telling her, "I can do this now that you're no longer my boss." Cuomo later apologized to her and her husband in an email, Ross wrote.