ABC News Live Update: 3rd woman accuses Gov. Cuomo of unwanted sexual advance

Plus, a new warning from the CDC as new variants threaten the fight against the coronavirus, and California’s new plan to vaccinate teachers and get kids back into the classroom.
31:23 | 03/02/21

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Transcript for ABC News Live Update: 3rd woman accuses Gov. Cuomo of unwanted sexual advance
Good morning I'm Dennis data thanks for streaming webcast in today's update us third woman has come forward accusing you governor Andrew Cuomo. I'm an unwanted sexual advance saying he tried to kiss her at a wedding reception. Two former aides and law also accused the governor sexual harassment at work. Now Cuomo is facing an independent investigation as calls Ferraro for him to step down. Also ahead the new warning from the CDC has variants threaten the fight against corona virus he's danced completely looted art or are we. A spring breakers flocked to Florida and stays relaxed restrictions. Could be facing a fourth wave of the pandemic. And a number of migrants hoping to cross the border is on the rise with at least 200 kids trying to come to the US every day without their parents. Now president Biden is facing backlash from fellow Democrats over where the US is putting those kids in the latest from the White House this morning. And the New York attorney general's office is considering whether to incorporate that third accuser intimate sexual harassment investigation of governor Andrew Cuomo. The New York Times report the latest allegation comes from a woman who claims inch when he nineteen the governor made an unwanted advance toward her at a wedding. ABC's Stephanie Ramos has the latest. This morning New York governor Andrew Cuomo facing new calls for resignation after a third woman has come forward with accusations of sexual harassment and a Brooke. Telling the New York Times the governor tried to kiss her adding New York City wedding reception in 2019. And then sharing this photograph she sent as was captured on her cell phone that ninety by a friend Brooke saying that when Governor Cuomo put his hand on her bare lower back she quote promptly removed his hand with mind hadn't. According to the paper. The governor remarked that she seemed aggressive and place his hands on her cheeks he asked if he could kiss her group telling the times. I turned my head away and didn't have words in that moment wild group met Cuomo for the first time at that wedding her allegations come after two former aides Lindsey Boylan and Charlotte Bennett accused the governor of sexual harassment at work. Then it tweeting her support for rook posting I hear you icu I'm sorry. His inappropriate and aggressive behavior cannot be justified or normalized. Bennett telling her story to the New York Times over the weekend alleging that last spring Cuomo made it clear to her he wanted to sleep with horror. You're just got or are urged. Russia and aren't in question. And our universe where all around. The governor and to nine Bennett's allegations releasing a statement Sunday saying that his words have been misinterpreted. As an unwanted flirtation. And that he was trying to be playful and funny Bennett saying Cuomo has refused to acknowledge or take responsibility for his predatory behavior. New York attorney general it to should James will now oversee an independent investigation with subpoena power into the sexual harassment allegations from the former aides. Diana become persona Kathleen rice is now calling on the governor to step down she is the highest ranking data. To do so Diane. Stephanie Ramos thank you NA BC's senior investigative reporter Aaron Qatar skate has been following this story for a C joins me now for more on this. Aaron good morning how it is Governor Cuomo responding to these accusations and the calls for him to step down. They and good morning she said different reactions to the different women when linseed oil and his former aide first made accusations that dated from a couple of years ago he flatly denied them she first raise those allegations back in December on Twitter repeated been recently on a medium post and he said. That the accusations just. Slide out we're not true that women have the right to come forward but and Lindsay women's Stacy G outright denied them when Charlotte Bennett came forward the governor had a little bit of a different statement. He said that his words were misinterpreted. As on want to flirtation key city in trying to be a mentor to Charlotte Bennett who was 25 years old back in June when she was in his office alone and when she alleges. That that he you guessed repeated questions about her sex life and left her with the impression that he wanted to sleep weather and when this third accuser does on a rook. They ended up talking about what happened she says what she says happened at a wedding reception beckons when in nineteen. The governor's office did not directly address the allegation but instead pointed back. The statement that the governor. Issued over the weekend the Senate's sometimes his words get miss interpreted. But there was that's photograph that that certainly has to be uncomfortable for the governor his hands are on. On the rocks cheeks and it seems to reinforce the notion. Thank you inspect at least punching her. Inappropriately and she said it made her feel uncomfortable. And Aaron that's not junior accusers coming for oranges the past few days how does that affect the investigation. You know I facing the need to be investigations just getting started and the attorney general's office was telling me that they they had just read the town in the New York Times given by general. And this one in nineteen wedding reception and they'll decide whether to incorporated. Into unit the broader investigation. On the rooks. Count is distinct from the other two and that she did not work for Cuomo or for state government she just happened to meet in. I don't wedding reception. And so whether it stints incident the attorney general's investigation as a focal point we're not sure but the attorney general news broadly investigating Cuomo's undocked. We've women over the years and and who knows how many more. Me stepped forward with these kinds of allegations. A column became a star in the Democratic Party over the past year what are pardon related leaders saying about all that's. It's just stunning Diane to think that it was one year ago yesterday. New York's at its first case of corona virus and that really launched Governor Cuomo. Into the national spotlight vote went his regular briefings and became almost must see TV for for so many people because she was giving. Such frank information. Democrats now are are hardly. Rushing to riches defense Som like congresswoman Kathleen rice are calling for his resignation. Other Democrats though prefer to wait for the outcome of the state attorney general's investigation. The news reel talk in democratic circles now dying and about whether they're holding themselves. To a standard that Republicans are are not interest in him and and whether they're unilaterally disarming him in this goes back to the ouster of Al Franken. From the United States senate. After an allegation that he he grabbed a woman's products. And some Democrats are are now feeling like. Maybe they forced Franken out too quickly. And maybe you know if if this were a Republican Cuomo wouldn't be held in the same standard. So I think it's a difficult spot for for Democrats but for now. That Cuomo himself it is news out of sight. Now hiding behind the investigation he says he will have no further public comment. Until that investigation wraps up and I could be months from now. And of course Daryn this isn't the only controversy surrounding him right now he's also under investigation for inaccurately reporting. Kobe death numbers in nursing homes early in the pandemic what's the latest on that. And that's what makes this such a troubling moment for Governor Cuomo in and of itself. A couple of women accusing him like this and maybe she could have weathered it differently. But she was already vulnerable. Because of the questions the persistent questions that still linger over whether he's been fully forthcoming. About the amount of corona virus death. In New York nursing homes he's under federal investigation. She is hired a prominent criminal attorney in New York City to represent an inning that and not investigation. And so. That has yet to be resolved and and taken together. As sort of a 12 punch sexual harassment allegations. Nursing home death information allegations. This is the most perilous moment of Cuomo's career. And it really raises questions as to whether he can run again for a fourth term we know that he you wanted to see you. About what is made him though the longest serving governor surpassing his father Mario Cuomo. But about look like a cakewalk forum got you don't just a couple of months ago. Now I think that's quite and doubt. All right Aaron pitchers keep thanks for the update Aaron we appreciate it. And Americans are expected to start receiving the John Johnson one shot vaccine as early as this morning. This is the director of the CDC warns we could face a fourth wave of the pandemic as the dropping Kobe case is stalls Victor McKenna has the latest. This morning the director of the CDC is pleading with Americans to keep their guard up. Remain deeply concerned about and social introductory. Hoping to prevent a possible fourth wave of the pandemic. According to the Department of Health and Human Services last week the US reported an increase of cases like 2% after six weeks of cases on the decline. And with only seven states relaxing restrictions this week the CDC is warning the number of cases is or to light especially with Coogan variant spreading. Well as would bury its credit we hands clean Hulu harder. Each variants are very real to our keep all our. Those concerns apparently falling on deaf ears for many already flocking to self order for spring break. My shared because that's how bad it really gone anywhere. By word line somewhere now. With broad sure to grow in the coming weeks Miami Beach scrapping all officials spring break events. Local leaders across South Florida encouraging mask wearing and social distancing. Banning alcohol and beaches and beefing up the police presence. It's spring break on Miami beast and we want you to remember to vacation responsibly. Or you will be arrested. The warning comes with the US still seeing nearly 70000. Cases a day among them. Albert when Josie Gonzales boat had appointments to get vaccinated but before they got their shots the Phoenix couple contracted Kubrick. Married for sixty years they died just six days apart. And there were that close to be instead leave. This pandemic acting it's it's real. With so many spring breakers flocking to South Florida there's real concern that they could further the spread not just here. But when they return home. On the vaccine front the first doses of the Johnson Johnson vaccine could go it arms as early as today. Diane. Had to do komando in Miami thanks Victor. Homeland Security secretary on hundrer Mallorca says he hopes to give families separated under president Donald Trump. The option to reunite in the US meanwhile the number of migrants trying to enter the US is now rising. Government resources are also being pushed to the brink cheap White House correspondent Cecilia Vega has the latest. This morning the Border Patrol planning to send more agents to the southern border as an influx of migrants their hopes to crops and despite scenes like this. The new Homeland Security secretary LA hundred Mallorca says this is not a crisis I think there is a challenge at the border that we are managing both the reality the numbers are on the rise. Every day Border Patrol agents apprehend an average of 200 children crossing without their parents. And the thousands of beds in government facilities where those kids would be cared for nearly all taken and now the administration is under fire from some in their own party. Who say those children are being housed in the very tent cities Democrats criticized the trim the administration for using. The Biden White House says they're just trying to keep kids safe. While they were to reunite them with family or send them to a Foster program as officials attempt to rebuild what they call an immoral immigration policy left behind by president trump. It takes time. To build out of the depths of cruelty that the administration. Before a us established. A. And ABC's Matt Gutman found the rollback of trump policies is giving asylum seekers like these hope. At this border encampment in Matamoros Mexico. There December 25000. Migrants that have been waiting suburban brook to two years for their chance to have their cases heard. In US. But even as so many families host it might now be dare return a message from the White House and don't cost him not yet anyway. We are not saying don't come. We are saying don't come now. Because we will be able to deliver. Safe and orderly process to get passed as quickly as possible. There is now a task force under way to try to reunite these families that were separated under that controversial trump administration policy secretary mighty orcas says that if they can reunite the families. They Arab going to allow them tighter be reunited. In their home country or possibly here in the United States abide administration's looking. For legal pathways to allow these families to stay but Diane listen to this we're still talking about more than 500. Children still separated. From their families to this day. Heartbreaking Sicilian amazing to think he's been this long now thank you. And here's what we're watching today in Washington at 10 AM eastern FBI director Christopher raid testified in front of the Senate Judiciary Committee. On the January 6 insurrection. Domestic terrorism and other threats. Fully carrying that live right here for you an ABC news live when it happens at 4:15 PM eastern president Biden will deliver remarks on the on going from the nineteen pandemic. And it's 6 PM eastern vice president Harris will swear in newly confirmed secretary of education Miguel Cardona. Los Angeles is now opening vaccination sites just for teachers as California faces mounting pressure to get kids back to school. We come back why some educators are not on board. Welcome back we're gonna run out of California's new plan to get kids back in the classroom according to the school opening track lumber Rio. Less than 12% of the State's public school students are attending class in person candy hearts and has the latest from a new mass vaccination site. Just for teachers. This morning in Chicago Boston and Baltimore. Tens of thousands of students now back in the classroom we have the math we had the rights we have at all and I'm with the company have been due to host so I'm Murphy I'm pretty good about that but the doors are still shut in Los Angeles. Still get me wrong we want to go back. Vaccination sites like bit sir opening specifically for teachers and school employee. We're setting aside a minimum of 75000. Doses to those teachers and educators that choose. To get the vaccination that the vast majority. Are very eager and supportive. Governor Newsom incentivizing public schools to reopen after nearly a year of online learning offering six point six billion dollars in grants to California schools who returned students to the classroom at least through second grade. By the end of march but even with the vaccine news' not all educators are on board. Until apple. Spends too bad speed. And until we how. Well. Safety measures and he cites we will not accept and are contrary we turn to school day. United teachers Los Angeles one of the largest teachers' unions in the country. Is now voting to refuse in person learning until all their safety measures and conditions are met. What he stated his parents who are frustrated and begging that the schools reopen. I would tell him that we're just as frustrated when you have. Rooms and bars opened. But yet schools on that bin given the adequate funding. In resource is to open yes I think we all could agree that that's something where we feel the same frustrated. Dianne Leeson stadiums across the country play host a mass vaccination sites but this one here is so phys stadium it is different because right now. It is open exclusively to teachers and school staff. To get shots in their arms but again some educators say they need more than a vaccine to feel safe are turning to the classroom. Teachers here in Los Angeles tell me this contentious battle therein right now it's just about the beginning of the process of reopening schools. It's about ensuring a safe environment for years to cop. Diane. Caylee hard time in Los Angeles thank you Caylee and joining me now is California federation of teachers president Jeffrey for a test for his groups take. On reopening schools Jeffrey good morning thanks for being here. Good morning to you for write in. So what threshold do you think school districts need to region terms of case numbers in vaccine raged in order to reopen. Oh. We believe the safest environment is to get. California Reno colored your system you get down into the red to vaccinated educators that ring leader actually commend them and you continue to provide the station mitigation years out of deed shall listen in all us. All of our equipment cleaning. Supplies all do it to continue. I'm took her to make sure that there's us and our current students are the instruments is all workers. Now you have said that even with all teachers vaccinated you are holding a stricter standards in the state has laid out for opening schools and you say that's to ensure that students and families are protected tube but children under sixteen chance. Get the vaccine right now so what exactly are you asking for us. And team needed induced. The team man. Or use our children under sixteen your Rex and and children or sixteen are ties cracks in. That's drama is a week to be able. To control the virus we needs them to mediate when we have larger groups of people and schools. The large gathering. Arms so to protect that the students and their families and can be employees armories need to make sure that these safety measures and annual beyond the vaccine and just the indicators are school's arts. Now you say you're trying to protect families but the prominent. Response from daily seems to be they want their kids back in the classroom at east haven. Actually you look at things out pew research that is theirs and the do dour and supported percent around Porter percent of families out. Wanted. Schools opened for wrecks in the younger than most. Families restrained in depth wanted vaccines are educators need tax return and integrate them into tomorrow. Graphics are not and when we all schools and personal education and that is happening throughout the state. Muir seen our. Communities of color not return and bottles of white communities so it is not an even distribution of people who wanted to be an. And as they say when we do and personal education that is occurring in the state we are not seen Riddick a back. And they're not they're making a choice because it is an remic Mayo liberal older. All the family members the people arrests and may need to share their permanent shouldn't they are armed with this or errors. Does governor Newsom as two million dollar incentive to reopen change anything pre and. That is in this bill what the proposal is the vaccines are in. Districts it's a school workers should be in person with the other mitigating factors batters in the bill as the two billion does how we've been hampered additional loans at below. Providers all classrooms provide more educators to provide that you eat and and an extra screenings of the extra bells go out smaller arts and it does all with everything routes involved all vaccine is wanted to major educators. And continued to suit the safety guidance must occur at the same taxes altogether there's another four point six billion dollars. For additional learning opportunities above from BR. What is normally it's so shall we can get back an arm policy and rubio should the students. And Jeffrey what's your response to critics who say that teachers' unions fighting school re openings are being selfish and not valuing students' needs and mental health needs or at the very least being overly cautious. As a teacher. Obama or actual math teacher tell you my number one concern and and the more concerned educators are that it. They want her work. Our personal lyrics provided for best education students in the sabres waited. And for many months and distance learning the message do students you to work doesn't it to the entire community. Owns and that's what I would say is ever one is concerned about the education about the community safety. And it's not just. Math and English it's also the social emotional and all its counsel always are. In the California federation of teachers president Jeffrey bridge as we appreciate your time today thank you. According England now we're concerns are growing over prince Philip's health after the 99 year old was transferred to a second hospital. This is a palace braces for Megyn and Harry's upcoming injury or an Oprah. Here's James Longman. Prince Philip waking up in a new hospital this morning the 99 year old was transported from a king Edward the seventh hospital. Has been treated for infection and 82 weeks to Saint Paul colonies a knowledge of facility with a specialist cardiovascular center the hottest release a statement Monday saying the Jeep will undertake testing and observation for a preexisting heart condition I think. He remains comfortable and is responding to treatment but is expected to remain in hospital until at least the end of the week. Almost un survivable. Sounds like there was a breaking point news of critics transferred comes the palace braces for an upcoming title Harry in making an interview with Oprah. We've said some pretty shocking things here. Grew silent or were you silent in their first interview together since taking a step back from the rule found me last year. My biggest concern was mr. PC it's Harry compares his exit from role liked the experience his mother Princess Diana had a fishy and Charles divorced. Beautiful me I'm just relieved relieved and happy to this city. Who continues with my wife or myself I. Because I can't begin to imagine what it must have been like it's going through this process play has sold. Because it's been unbelievably tough for the two of us couldn't be having children pulled. Good timing though it's clashing with the queen's commonwealth day address. The unfortunate timing isn't this a success followed however ID can that they ti risk an increased risk golf backlash and because of the timing you know if that on television and that saying things that can be perceived as being critical of the royal family at a time when 99 year old prince and that he's in hospital and the queen is carrying on with ITT's that I think that might know I tell mile with a lot of people. The interview comes days off to Harry spoke to James cordon about his decision to leave I did what any. Husband what I need father would do with adding that he's staying in touch with his family. Does that we don't know how to uses and yes quite playground parents these prices we see the it's demise of my grandfather instead of like pressing leave meeting yes it's sister is its. But the reaction to their upcoming interview receives face one royal watcher tweeting it is the drama it was almost un survivable. Queen Paris men and Gracie it's toxic press silencing the couple it's the movie event of the year cannot wait. The timing of all this really is causing a false Hague given the adjective that number is illness and some people are even calling for the broad cost to beat the stunt Diane. All right James long an a Buckingham Palace thanks James. And we have some sad news to report unfortunately civil rights leader Vernon Jordan has died. Jordan began his career fighting segregation working at the NAACP before me coming president of the National Urban League. He was a close advisor to former President Bill Clinton both before and during his time in office and worked with the White House and a time or Lyndon Johnson to Barack Obama. In a statement the NAACP said Jordan's life quote we'll shine as a Guiding Light for all that seek truth and justice for all people. Born in Jordan was 85 results. And an iceberg twenty times the size of Manhattan has broken off. Antarctic up when we come back to the new images from above and what scientists are saying. Welcome back we are just a few moments away from the opening bell on Wall Street as big box retailer target released earnings for the fourth quarter. It topped Wall Street estimates that sales rising 21%. And that lift is credited to strong online sales and and then some from stimulus checks into January conceded traders they're clapping. Waiting for the opening bell should. And then as traders opens on Wall Street. And tonight ABC is launching so all of the nation a new six part prime time series looking at the black experience in America. The series explores the nation's moment of racial reckoning and issues from police sink. To reparations. You most and Sonny has a preview of tonight's premiere. It's the first of its kind on network television a weekly newsmagazine roundtable and entertainment hour all in the black experience by black Americans for an all Americans. Zune in. Okay. Our musical guest tonight is John Legend and he brings more than his songs. I could choose to not speak out about anything controversial and just focus and being popular and having people listen to my music but. I just feel like I can't be that person. In our first episode tonight at 10 PM eastern one of the finest law enforcement reporters in the leg holes and Pierre Thomas brings us his interview with a black police officer. Who some bears down the racist terrorists who stormed the US capitol use the word terrorist absolutely absolutely. They tried to disrupt this country's democracy. That was good goal. You know when it. Yell failed. The program is unafraid to talk about issues many Americans would like to ignore. For example the argument that many black Americans are making reparations it. Only the only the end only eight I only got some big work only legislative response times for us is reparations it was a question that came up when we travel to Tulsa Oklahoma. To tell the story about a racist massacre that happened here in 1921. Hard to believe the people are only now beginning they know what really happened. Hollywood is now helping with the old history books of sale in this scene from HBO's watch them they tell the story. The black Americans who were killed and they are just now finding the remains of some of these victims and the families here want reparations to. Do you support direct payments to these families I didn't personally yes for the preparation simply. Is. Repairing. Enhanced damages and making me it's. A segment of that can be. Cash payments to individuals who were directly heart I don't think there's anybody that would not support. Well other equipment but I think that that. Give you get back to that is second incident. Given the history. And in that and I'll put that in context from its face value. You get a lot of resistance. Yeah they're going to write checks for you know we could we're having news of India Britain. They don't like to write checks for. Things that and for our sins and that they don't field day. This project probably wouldn't be happening if it were for the change in conversations in this country about race conversations about equity. And fairness the Tulsa story we'll have more on later in the series we're also working on a podcast that dives deep into what happened. Jury the Tulsa massacre that will be airing when that piece here's console the nation it airs tonight. At 10 PM eastern 9 central Diane we hope that. The watch. Steve I'll be watching and I'll be listening to that podcast when it comes out. And as Steve mentioned you can watch the premiere console in the nation tonight that's at 10 eastern 9 central on ABC. And a few more things to know before you go an iceberg bigger than New York City has. Broken off of Antarctic got. Researchers have been watching and waiting for the 490 square mile icebergs break off. Basic climate change did not play a significant role music and natural process and they also say it will not contribute to rising sea love. Six Dr. Seuss books will no longer be published because they contain racist and insensitive images. And to think that I signed on mulberry street as well as if I ran the zoo are some of the titles that will no longer be published. Dr. Seuss enterprises told ABC news quote we are committed to action and that these books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong. And ready vacationing in space we'll new plans have been released for the world's first space hotel. A California company is planning to start construction and 20/20 five have a high flying hotel in low earth orbit. The hotel opened in 127 with restaurants a cinema a stop and room for 400 people. Still no word on the cost. And that doesn't that is ABC news live update I'm Diane as you know thanks so much for joining us. A programming note for you be sure to check out the first two episodes of our new ABC news podcast titled here in plain sight Lady Bird Johnson. A revealing look at one of the most influential members of the Johnson administration told in her own words. From mostly unheard audio diaries it's available for free on all major podcast platforms. And remember ABC news what is your free all day with the latest news context.

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