Yesterday, a state ethics board released a report chronicling systematic, predatory sexual harassment by Assemblyman Vito Lopez. The content of this thing is shocking. It's over 70 pages long, contains a tremendous amount of detail, some of which is so bad that it was actually redacted, and thus is still not public.
But even barring the redacted stuff, what's there doesn't leave much to the imagination. It makes unmistakably clear that Vito Lopez is a danger to the women on his staff.
Here's what Governor Cuomo said, as reported by the New York Times:
“Vito Lopez should not spend another day in office, let alone a whole month,” Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said in a statement. “He should resign effective immediately and if he does not, he must be expelled.”
Things moved quickly after that. Speaker Sheldon Silver said he would seek to get Lopez expelled last night. And then this afternoon Lopez said he would resign. For the first time, the Speaker and Lopez both did exactly what was called for under the circumstances.
But that's not the end of the story. Lopez is resigning from the Assembly, but he's still very much a candidate for New York City Council.
Again, from the New York Times:
“I expect to run a vigorous campaign on the issues facing the citizens of my community and hope to continue to serve them as a member of the City Council,” Mr. Lopez said in his statement. “I believe that the voters of the community should decide who should represent them.”
Let's make sure Vito understands how we feel about this. If you're as outraged as we are, add your name to chorus of New Yorkers demanding Vito drop out of the race for City Council right now.
We're proud to announcements endorsements for the following candidates:
- Scott Stringer for New York City Comptroller
- Abe George for Brooklyn District Attorney
- No Endorsement in the 35th City Council District (No candidate broke two-thirds threshold required for endorsement)
- Carlos Menchaca for 38th City Council District
The choices were tough, as there are a lot of compelling progressive candidates in the field this year. Thanks so much to all the candidates who gave us their time tonight, and to all the NKD members who casted ballots.