Chris Cuomo was fired by CNN on Saturday amid a network inquiry into his efforts to help his brother, Andrew M. Cuomo, then the governor of New York, fight off a sexual harassment scandal.
“Chris Cuomo was suspended earlier this week pending further evaluation of new information that came to light about his involvement with his brother’s defense,” CNN said in a statement on Saturday. “We retained a respected law firm to conduct the review, and have terminated him, effective immediately. While in the process of that review, additional information has come to light. Despite the termination, we will investigate as appropriate.”
The announcement completed a stunning downfall for Chris Cuomo, the top-rated anchor at CNN and a veteran television journalist who had built a successful broadcast career outside of his famed political family. Until last month, Mr. Cuomo had enjoyed the support of CNN’s president, Jeff Zucker, and faced no discipline for his behind-the-scenes strategizing with Andrew Cuomo’s political aides, a breach of basic journalistic norms.
But a new batch of testimony and text messages released by the New York attorney general on Nov. 29 revealed that the CNN anchor had played a more intimate and engaged role in his brother’s political affairs than the network said it had previously known. CNN executives, previously steadfast in backing Mr. Cuomo, placed him on indefinite suspension on Tuesday, a sign of deep unease among the network’s management.