New York Governor Calls For Investigation Of State Senator Following HuffPost Report

State Sen. Jeff Klein denies claims he forced a kiss on a former staffer during a celebration party at an Albany bar in 2015

State Sen. Liz Krueger, D-Manhattan, said that she had been approached for advice by Vladimer about two weeks ago.

The investigation Cuomo has called for would likely be conducted by the Joint Commission on Public Ethics, the state's lead ethics enforcement agency.

"This alleged incident did not happen - period", said Klein, who was joined on the conference call by another state senator, Diane Savino, who is in a long-term relationship with Klein. However, the recent allegation against Klein may embolden anti-IDC progressive groups, and the candidates who wish to take him down.

Jeff Klein of forcibly kissing her while celebrating passage of the state budget in 2015, an allegation Klein strenuously denied Wednesday.

"Every allegation of sexual misconduct must be taken seriously", Cuomo said in a statement late Wednesday night, just hours after Huffington Post published a report on Vladimer's allegation.

Zweig and Goldberg said that Vladimer had invited Klein to a Seder dinner that evening, and the senator "politely declined".

Earlier this month, Klein was asked his opinion about the need for new sexual harassment policies in Albany, after Democratic and Republican legislators, as well as Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, signaled their intention to push for stricter rules in the new legislative session. Senators David Valesky, David Carlucci, Tony Avella, Jesse Hamilton, Jose Peralta and Marisol Alcantara say they have "complete confidence" in Klein, and say the allegations are "completely out of character" for the Senate Leader, who they say is a "longtime champion for women". Vladimer left her job in May 2015. The lawyer, Michela Zweib, of Loeb and Loeb, interviewed several witnesses who said the alleged incident on the sidewalk outside the bar did not occur.

Assemblyman John McDonald said the accusations cast a dark cloud over the legislature. On Thursday, the head of that committee, Long Island GOP Sen.

"Albany has a reputation for being a town with a lot of powerful men and a lot of young staffers who are women, with a reputation for sexual harassment being a problem". "I agree with Senator Klein and with Senator Krueger that this disturbing situation should be investigated, and I believe it should be done immediately and independently".

"At this point, this is an allegation in which no formal complaint was ever made".

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Among those attending was Jessica Ramos, a former de Blasio staffer who is running to unseat IDC member state Sen.

"We will continue to do everything possible to ensure that the policies and procedures in place are best serving our members and our staff, and fostering a safe workplace", Flanagan said.

Klein, meanwhile, circulated a short letter signed by 23 women saying he'd been a gentlemen to them.

Bronx State Senator Jeff Klein, leader of the Independent Democratic Conference, has blasted accusations that he forcibly kissed a former employee at a bar in Albany in 2015.

However, Savino responded to the allegations and claimed it "never happened" and that she has known Klein "personally and professionally for nearly 16 years".

Governor Cuomo, along with two Senate Democrats, including the Senate Democratic Leader, is among those calling for an independent probe.

Vladimer said she then went back into the bar and was initially anxious that Klein's girlfriend, Savino, may have seen them.

"The following day after March 31st, I heard a rumor from a staffer of mine as to the alleged incident".

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics.

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