As he fights to remain aggressive within the mayoral race, Scott Stringer on Wednesday stated he welcomed an investigation into claims that he sexually assaulted a lady who volunteered on his 2001 public advocate marketing campaign.
Chatting with Brian Lehrer, he stated that whereas he supported a lady’s proper to return ahead about sexual misconduct, he additionally “believes in due course of and justice.” The allegations, he claimed, “are 100% unfaithful.”
Final week, Jean Kim, now a lobbyist, accused Stringer of forcibly touching and kissing her in addition to repeatedly propositioning her. Stringer has vehemently denied the allegations, saying the 2 had a consensual relationship. “We had a friendship, with a bit of extra,” Stringer instructed Lehrer. Kim maintains they by no means had intercourse.
Take heed to WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Present phase with Scott Stringer:
On Tuesday, Kim filed a civil rights criticism with the New York Legal professional Common’s workplace. Her lawyer, Patricia Pastor, has argued that the legal professional normal ought to examine wrongdoing by Stringer since he was a state meeting member on the time of the alleged incidents and likewise as a result of he’s at the moment a metropolis comptroller who’s operating for mayor.
However it isn’t clear whether or not Letitia James, the legal professional normal, will take the case and the way an investigation on incidents courting again twenty years can be dealt with. James is at the moment overseeing an unbiased investigation into sexual misconduct accusations made by a number of girls towards Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Stringer has tried to stroll a line between displaying respect for the #MeToo motion and undermining the accuser’s credibility.
Through the interview with Lehrer, he repeatedly cited an Intercept story that raised questions on Kim’s statements and potential motivations.
One difficulty that Stringer and the article raises is Kim’s assertion that she labored as an unpaid intern on Stringer’s marketing campaign.
“Jean Kim was by no means an intern,” he instructed Lehrer. “She was a 30-year-old grownup who was a marketing campaign contributor.”
Kim has maintained that the disagreement quantities to semantics, calling the marketing campaign an intern-like environment through which she was mentored by Stringer.
Reached for remark, Kim’s legal professional, Pastor, known as the Intercept story “stuffed with bias and inaccuracies.”
The Intercept story additionally raises questions in regards to the timeline of Stringer and Kim’s relationship.
Throughout his interview on Wednesday, Stringer stated he couldn’t bear in mind once they first met.
Within the wake of the accusations, lots of Stringer’s progressive supporters, together with the Working Households Occasion, have rescinded their endorsements. The New York Instances reported an unnamed supply as saying that members of the Working Households Occasion had felt Stringer had been too defensive and did not acknowledge the facility imbalance between himself and Kim.
Requested in regards to the prompt energy imbalance, Stringer stated, “I’ve had numerous associates, girlfriends, private associates who labored on campaigns as volunteers.”
“We had been associates, we had been each adults,” he added.
Stringer additionally responded to efforts by his marketing campaign to hyperlink Kim to rival candidate Andrew Yang. His marketing campaign spokesperson, Tyrone Stevens, has pointed to poll petitions she distributed which had Yang on the poll. Kim has stated the petitions had been for a district chief candidate named Esther Yang, who’s supporting Andrew Yang.
“I don’t actually care who she’s supporting for president or mayor or any workplace,” Stringer stated. “Her political life just isn’t my concern.” He added that it was about “getting out to the general public all the things that needs to be on the market. All people could make up their very own minds.”
Stringer, who has labored in metropolis politics for 3 a long time, later added that he was aggressively defending himself in order that his kids may learn his response “twenty years” from now.
“I signed up for this journey. I don’t need anyone to really feel sorry for me,” he stated. “I would like [my children] to have the ability to say our dad was very clear. That to me is extra vital than being mayor of the town.”