- The Washington Times - Monday, March 1, 2021

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo insisted a female reporter “eat the whole sausage” in front of him in a clip that resurfaced Sunday amid sexual harassment allegations by two former aides.

The two-minute clip tweeted by journalist Matt Binder showed Mr. Cuomo at the 2016 New York State Fair daring NewsChannel 9’s Beth Cefalu to eat a sausage sandwich. Ms. Cefalu accepts the challenge and an aide hands her a sandwich. 

“I want to see you eat the whole sausage,” Mr. Cuomo says in the video. “No excuses.”

“I don’t know if I should eat the whole sausage in front of you, but I’m definitely going to eat it,” Ms. Cefalu responds. 

Ms. Cefalu then sits down next to the Democratic governor, asking for a selfie as a “fair trade.” While posing for the picture, Ms. Cefalu holds up her sandwich.

“There’s too much sausage in that picture,” Mr. Cuomo said, laughing.

The video is gaining renewed attention after two former aides to the governor accused him of sexual harassment. Mr. Cuomo, who faces a separate controversy over his handling of nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, has denied any unwanted touching or propositioning and admitted that he often makes “playful” jokes to people but doesn’t mean any harm.

Ms. Cefalu told Fox News that she did not feel pressured by Mr. Cuomo during their 2016 exchange and it has “nothing to do” with the harassment claims he’s facing today.

“The governor was trying to be nice and got me some food,” she recalled. “It’s probably the one day of year or story of the year he and I can be a little informal and that’s what this was nothing more. He did not pressure me - he was not hitting on me nor did I feel harassed in anyway.”

Ms. Cefalu also wrote in a tweet, “I was not pressured/harassed this is two people enjoying the one event - the NYS fair - that gives them a little more freedom to be informal. [It’s] really sad it’s being turned into anything more.”

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