New York state senator Jeffrey Klein was accused by a former Senate staffer of forcibly kissing her in 2015, the Huffington Post reported Wednesday.
Klein, who leads the breakaway Independent Democratic Conference, represents the Bronx neighborhood of Riverdale in the Senate. Klein denied the allegations.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, among others, has called for an investigation, according to the Huffington Post.
The former staffer, Erica Vladimer, told the Huffington Post that Klein had kissed her outside of a bar where they were gathering with other senators and staffers.
“All of a sudden there was a hand on the back of my head and he shoved his tongue down my throat,” Vladimer told the site. “In my head it lasted forever, I don’t think it lasted even three seconds.”
As the head of the IDC, Klein is a kingmaker in Albany. A pending deal with the mainstream Democrats could soon make him one of the two co-leaders of the State Senate.
Josh Nathan-Kazis is a staff writer for the Forward. He covers charities and politics, and writes investigations and longform.
State Senator Jeff Klein Accused Of Kissing Staffer