Just as the Senate passed a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill in a legislative triumph for, the news cycle was overtaken by New York Gov. announcing his retirement.
Within minutes of Cuomo’s announcement, which came in the middle of an address responding to allegations of sexual harassment, the major news outlets’ homepages highlighted Cuomo, relegating Biden and the Senate action to the margins.
Fox News, CNN and MSNBC all had Cuomo’s resignation as the lead stories on their respective pages, as did ABC News, NBC News and CBS News.
“Cuomo to resign amid sexual harassment scandal,” was emblazoned atop the New York Times homepage, with “Senate Passes $1 Trillion Infrastructure Bill” underneath. Likewise, the Washington Post had Cuomo’s resignation on top of its site, with the bill’s passage below.
, on the other hand, remained all about infrastructure, with a lead story on the partnership that led to the bill being passed. A small breaking news link above announced the news of Cuomo’s resignation. Other online outlets and led with Cuomo.
While both the infrastructure bill and Cuomo’s political scandals have been major stories for weeks, Cuomo’s resignation came as a surprise, as the soon-to-be-former governor had emphatically denied wrongdoing amid pressure from the public and officials at the state and federal levels and continues to do so.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki emphasized the importance of the infrastructure deal when asked why she thought Cuomo chose the day of the infrastructure vote to announce his resignation.
“What I can assure you of is that the American people across the country who are commuting back and forth to work, driving their kids to camp, worried about whether their kids have access to clean drinking water, focused on whether schools are going to have the resources they need, are most focused on the fact that 69 members of the Senate, 19 Republicans, joined the Democratic caucus to take an important step forward,” Psaki said. “That’s my bet in terms of what people are talking about at home.”