REPORT: Ex-Cuomo Aide Tells CBS She Was ‘Groomed’ for Sex

NEW YORK (Newsmax) — Charlotte Bennett, 25, a former executive assistant to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, is making her first televised allegations, saying she believes she was being “groomed” for sex.

Bennett’s exclusive interview with Norah O’Donnell on “CBS Evening News” is set to air Thursday.

In a preview posted on Twitter, O’Donnell details how Bennett repeats the claims that Cuomo, 63, “asked her about her sex life” and whether “she had sex with older men” and “told her he was lonely.”

Also, O’Donnell said, Bennett “talks about how she believes that Gov. Cuomo groomed her.

“Ms. Bennett’s concerns were treated with sensitivity and respect and in accordance with applicable law and policy,” Cuomo adviser Beth Garvey said in a statement, according to the New York Post. “She was consulted regarding the resolution, and expressed satisfaction and appreciation for the way in which it was handled.”

Bennett lawyer Debra Katz says the allegations have “derailed her career.”

Bennett left the $55,000-a-year job in the Cuomo administration in November, per the Post.

“I understood that the governor wanted to sleep with me, and felt horribly uncomfortable and scared,” Bennett has claimed, per the report.

In his first public remarks about the allegations of three women, Cuomo gave an apology for “unintentionally” making women feel “uncomfortable,” and said he was “embarrassed,” but he denied “inappropriate” touching.

‘GET HIM ON TAPE’: Gowdy suggests videotaping private interview with Comey to prevent leak concerns

WASHINGTON- Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) on Sunday suggested recording a private interview with former FBI director James Comey after Comey said he would comply with a House Judiciary Committee subpoena only through a public hearing.

Gowdy, who has presided over multiple congressional hearings as chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, told CBS’s “Face the Nation,” that he agreed with Comey that private hearings are sometimes susceptible to leaks.

“The remedy for leaks is not to have a public hearing where you are supposed to ask about 17 months worth of work in five minutes. I think the remedy is to videotape the deposition, videotape the transcribed interview,” Gowdy told CBS, suggesting that the interview could be cleansed of classified information, then released to the public.

“I am sensitive to leaks,” Gowdy said. “I think they undercut the authenticity of the investigation. The remedy is not to have a professional wrestling-type, carnival atmosphere, which is what congressional public hearings have become.”

Comey, who was fired by President Donald Trump in May of 2017, tweeted on Thanksgiving that he received a subpoena from House Republicans to testify but would only do so if certain conditions were met.

“I’m still happy to sit in the light and answer all questions. But I will resist a ‘closed door’ thing because I’ve seen enough of their selective leaking and distortion,” Comey tweeted. “Let’s have a hearing and invite everyone to see.”

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HOLLYWOOD BOMBSHELL: Actor Robert Wagner now named ‘person of interest’ in death of wife, Natalie Wood

LOS ANGELES, CA — Robert Wagner on Thursday was officially named a “person of interest” in the mysterious death of his late wife Natalie Wood.

Wood’s 1981 death has long been the subject of rumors and innuendo. The beauty, best known for her starring roles in films such as “West Side Story”, “Rebel Without a Cause” and “Splendor in the Grass” was found dead in the Pacific Ocean not far from the houseboat she shared with Wagner. Although witnesses claim to have heard loud arguing coming from the couple’s boat just prior to the 43-year-old’s death, investigators closed the case into Wood’s death, declaring it the result of an accidental drowning.

However, under growing pressure to reexamine her death, the Los Angeles County Sheriff office re-opened the case in 2011 and changed Wood’s cause of death from “accidental drowning” to “drowning and other undetermined factors.”

Wagner, who has always denied any wrongdoing in the death of his then-wife, has now been named a “person of interest” in Wood’s death, says a sheriff’s department spokesperson.

“As we’ve investigated the case over the last six years, I think he’s (Wagner) more of a person of interest now,” John Corina, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, told “48 Hours” in an exclusive interview (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/natalie-wood-death-robert-wagner-person-of-interest-says-investigator/). “I mean, we know now that he was the last person to be with Natalie before she disappeared.”

Wagner, who in a 2008 memoir titled “Pieces of My Heart” admitted to arguing with fellow actor Christopher Walken, also on board the boat the night of Wood’s death, said despite rumors that he flew into a jealous rage over an alleged affair between Woods and Walken, he has no idea what happened to his wife.

“Nobody knows. There are only two possibilities: either she was trying to get away from the argument, or she was trying to tie the dinghy. But the bottom line is that nobody knows exactly what happened,” Wagner wrote.

“Did I blame myself?” Wagner continued in his memoir. “If I had been there, I could have done something. But I wasn’t there. I didn’t see her. The door was closed; I thought she was below decks. I didn’t hear anything. But ultimately, a man is responsible for his loved one, and she was my loved one.”

Corina says after having changed his story several times in regard to what happened that fateful night, Wagner now refuses to speak to investigators about the events leading up to his wife’s death.

“I haven’t seen him (Wagner) tell the details that match all the other witnesses in this case,” Corina said. “I think he’s constantly changed his story a little bit. And his version of events just don’t add up.”

Referencing the official autopsy report issued by the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office, Ralph Hernandez, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, told “48 Hours” he now suspects foul play.

“She looked like a victim of an assault,” Hernandez said, pointing out the report’s noting of fresh bruising on Wood’s body.

Calls for statement to Wagner’s spokesperson were met with “no comment”.

“Natalie Wood: Death in Dark Water” airs Saturday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.

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STATE OF WITHDRAWL: Trump’s pick for drug czar removes himself from consideration after bombshell report

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Rep. Tom Marino, the president’s top pick for drug czar, removed himself from the list of Trump nominees Tuesday after a report surfaced suggesting the Pennsylvania Republican is soft on enforcing drug laws.

“Rep. Tom Marino has informed me that he is withdrawing his name from consideration as drug czar. Tom is a fine man and a great Congressman!” the president tweeted Tuesday after being notified of Marino’s decision.

Marino’s withdrawal comes on the heels of a joint report by CBS’ 60 Minutes and The Washington Post (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2017/10/17/trump-says-drug-czar-nominee-tom-marino-is-withdrawing-after-washington-post60-minutes-investigation/?utm_term=.caace5cf1488) which claimed Marino had worked to water down legislation and weaken the Drug Enforcement Administration’s ability to go after high-level drug dealers.

The report alleged that Marino, who was the chief advocate for a 2016 bill at the center of the investigation, used legislation to disarm the Drug Enforcement Administration during the height of the crisis, thus weakening the DEA’s control over opioid drug distributors.

Both Democrats and Republicans had called on the president to remove Marino from consideration in light of the WaPo report, but as of Monday President Trump had failed to make a formal decision on the matter.

“He was a very early supporter of mine. … He’s a great guy,” Trump said during a press conference on Monday adding, “We’re going to look into the report. We’re going to take it very seriously. … We’re going to be looking into Tom.”

During a Tuesday morning interview on Fox News Radio with host Brian Kilmeade,
Trump praised Marino and said he understood his decision to remove himself from consideration.

“He was very gracious,” Trump said. “He didn’t want to even have the perception of a conflict of interest with drug companies or insurance companies.”

“There was a couple of articles having to do with him and drug companies,” Trump said. “And I will tell you he felt compelled. He feels strong about the opioid problem and the drug problem, which is a worldwide problem, it’s a problem that we have. And Tom Marino said, ‘I’ll take a pass, I have no choice, I’ll really take a pass, I want to do it.’ He was very gracious, I have to say that.”

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin, who led Democrats on Monday in opposing Marino’s nomination, praised Trump over the announcement.

“Thanks for recognizing we need a drug czar who has seen the devastating effects of the problem,” Manchin said in a tweet to the president.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, (R)-Utah, who had worked with Marino to co-sponsor the bill, defended the legislation on Monday, calling allegations that either of the two had “conspired” with drug companies “utterly ridiculous.”

I’m “no patsy” of the drug industry, said Hatch.

Calls for statement from Rep. Marino were met with “no comment”.

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TRUMP: ‘Will Hillary run against me in 2020? I hope so!’

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Even if former Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton has given up her aspirations of a White House run, one high profile politician certainly hopes she’ll give it another go…President Trump.

“I was recently asked if Crooked Hillary Clinton is going to run in 2020? My answer was, ‘I hope so!’” the president wrote Monday on Twitter (https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/919914000959397888).

Clinton, however, said during an interview last month with “CBS This Morning” that her role “as a political candidate” is “over.”

“I am done with being a candidate,” Clinton said. “But I am not done with politics, because I literally believe that our country’s future is at stake.”

In addition to mocking his former rival, Trump also took some time to showcase his administration’s accomplishments as he nears the end of his first nine months as president.

“Since Election Day on November 8, the Stock Market is up more than 25%, unemployment is at a 17 year low & companies are coming back to U.S.,” the president wrote in another tweet.

“The U.S. has gained more than 5.2 trillion dollars in Stock Market Value since Election Day! Also, record business enthusiasm,” he bragged in yet another.

During a press conference later on Monday, Trump reiterated his hope that “crooked Hillary” changes her mind, calling out her weaknesses as a candidate. Citing the former Secretary of State’s support for NFL players protesting during the national anthem – the president called her stance on such issues just one example of “why she lost.”

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BANNON SPEAKS: Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon tells all to 60 Minutes; Says Hillary’s ‘Not very bright’

New York, N.Y. — In an unapologetic CBS interview on Sunday night’s “60 Minutes”, former Trump strategist Steve Bannon took on everyone from his former boss to defeated Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. During his first interview since leaving the White House, Bannon raged against “pearl-clutching mainstream media,” his former West Wing colleagues and even the Roman Catholic Church.

Speaking to interviewer Charlie Rose (https://www.cbsnews.com/news/60-minutes-breitbart-steve-bannon-declares-war-on-the-gop/), Bannon said the president’s biggest enemies aren’t Democrats, but some of his fellow Republicans, and alleged that some in the GOP are “trying to nullify the 2016 election.”

“They do not want Donald Trump’s populist, economic nationalist agenda to be implemented,” Bannon told Rose. “It’s very obvious.”

“Oh, Mitch McConnell when we first met him, I mean, he was– he was– he– he said, I think in one of the first meetings– in Trump Tower with the president– as we’re wrapping up, he basically says, ‘I don’t want to hear any more of this ‘drain the swamp’ talk,’” Bannon said after Rose asked him for an example.

“He says, ‘I can’t– I can’t hire any smart people,’ because everybody’s all over him for reporting requirements and– and the pay, et cetera, and the scrutiny. You know, ‘You gotta back off that.’ The ‘drain the swamp’ thing was– is Mitch McConnell was day one did not want to– did not want to go there. Wanted us to back off.”

Asked if he wound now be “going to war” against establishment members of the GOP who are out to do the president harm, Bannon replied, “absolutely”.

But despite his obvious protection of Trump, Bannon’s former boss could not escape criticism of his own. When asked about the president’s decision to fire former FBI head James Comey, a visibly frustrated Bannon called the decision the “biggest mistake in modern political history”.

Had Comey not been fired, said Bannon, the Justice Department investigation into possible links between the Trump campaign and Russia’s election interference would not have been handed over to the special counsel Robert Meuller.

“We would not have the Mueller investigation and the breadth that clearly Mr. Mueller is going for,” said Bannon.

The chairman of Breitbart News also clarified the ongoing controversy over his leaving his role in the president’s administration, which many claimed was due to being fired.

Not true, said Bannon, saying his intent all along has been to be the president’s “wingman outside for the entire time” he is in office.

“Our purpose is to support Donald Trump,” he said. “I cannot take the fight to who we have to take the fight to when I’m an adviser to the president as a federal government employee.”

Speaking out on the president’s controversial decision to end DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program put in place by former president Barack Obama, Bannon warned his fellow Republicans they may have to be prepared to face a “civil war”.

“I’m worried about losing the House now because of this,” Bannon said over the battle on what to do with about 800,000 immigrants known as “Dreamers”. “If this goes all the way down to its logical conclusion, in February and March it will be a civil war inside the Republican Party and to me, doing that in the springboard of primary season for 2018 is extremely unwise.”

On that same topic, Bannon also slammed the Catholic Church for its stance on supporting the rights of illegal immigrants to stay in the United States.

“The bishops have been terrible about this,” Bannon said of church leaders.
“You know why? Because unable to really to come to grips with the problems in the church, they need illegal aliens, they need illegal aliens to fill the churches.”

On the president’s former political rival Hillary Clinton, Bannon said he could sum up his opinion of her in a single statement: “Hillary Clinton’s not very bright”.

Slamming Clinton for a speech she gave while campaigning last year attempting to connect the “alt-right” and white supremacists to the Trump campaign, Bannon called her comments “nonsense.”

“Everybody says she’s so smart, so much smarter than Donald Trump. She doesn’t really have a grasp . . . on what’s important and what’s not, and that’s what’s essential in a leader. Donald Trump has a grasp on what’s important and what’s marginalia.”

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COLBERT UNDER FIRE: CAMPAIGN TO FIRE COMEDIAN EXPLODES AFTER GAY CRACK AGAINST TRUMP

NEW YORK, N.Y. — Stephen Colbert, host of ‘The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’ is under fire on social media after critics say he took a joke against president Donald Trump way too far.

Criticizing Trump on Monday night for unexpectedly ending an interview with CBS News’ “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson on Saturday, Colbert’s opening monologue quickly veered off course into a tirade that many viewers called tasteless and “homophobic”.

“Sir, you attract more skinheads than free Rogaine,” Colbert said during his profranity-laden diatribe, which was repeatedly bleeped during the telecast. “You have more people marching against you than cancer. You talk like a sign language gorilla that got hit in the head. In fact, the only thing your mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin’s c–k holster.”

Almost instantaneously, network viewers took to Twitter in defense of the president and to demand Colbert’s removal from the air.

“Hey @CBS #StephenColbert is NOT a comic. I NEVER tune in because of his hate-filled attitude towards @POTUS @realDonaldTrump #FireColbert,” tweeted Rep. B.J. Nikkel.

“#firecolbert CBS STAND UP AND DO THE RIGHT THING FIRE COLBERT THIS SHOULD NOT BE TOLERATED,IF IT WAS SAID ABOUT OBAMA HE WOULD BE GONE,” tweeted another viewer using the Twitter handle “MikeM”.

Still another viewer going by the handle, “hank_1972” tweeted, “Time for him to go. Total trash. I will boycott advertisers. #FireColbert”.

Brit Hume, senior political analyst for the Fox News Channel was also quick to chime in on the controversy. “Will there be consequences for Stephen Colbert’s obscene attack on the president last night, or even any comment from CBS?” Hume tweeted.

Karl Rove, a senior adviser for the George W. Bush administration, called Colbert’s comments “lewd,” “obscene” and “inappropriate.”

“They wrote this. This was not a rant that he came up with on the top of this head. They wrote this,” Rove said while appearing on Fox News on Tuesday night. “I’m going to continue to do what I do with anything Colbert. I’m going to refuse to watch the SOB.”

So far, the normally outspoken Colbert is lying low amidst the controversy.

A spokesperson for the CBS network declined to provide statement when reached for comment.

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