The real reason Andrew Cuomo and Kerry Kennedy got divorced

Andrew Cuomo

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, stabilizing forces are few and far between, but New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has inadvertently become one of them. His press reports and daily updates on the virus in New York City, the epicenter of COVID in the United States, have placed the three-term governor as one of the leading figures in the fight against the disease.

Unfortunately, in the midst of fighting the pandemic, Cuomo’s family is also mourning the deaths of Maeve McKean and her 8-year-old son, Gideon, who died in a boating accident in Chesapeake Bay in April 2024. They were Cousins of Cuomo’s three daughters, Mariah, Cara and Michaela Kennedy-Cuomo, and the niece and nephew-grandson of his ex-wife, Kerry Kennedy, who is the daughter of assassinated Senator Robert F. Kennedy.

Governor Cuomo addressed the boating accident during a press conference in April 2024, acknowledging that the coronavirus had left his family without the ability to cry with loved ones. “The most difficult level is the human one, anyway it is for me,” he said. “My daughters’ cousins have a tragedy. They cannot hug each other, they cannot be together to cry together ».

Unfortunately, the governor’s statement was not the first in connection with a tragic death in the Kennedy family. In fact, a mysteriously similar situation in the past may have been one of the factors that tore apart his marriage to Kerry and unraveled his connection to the Kennedy political dynasty.

Cuomo could have been looking for love … and political power

Like many Kennedy unions, the courtship between Andrew Cuomo and Kerry Kennedy had the characteristics of a fairy tale, according to the press, at least.

As journalist Michael Shnayerson described in a 2015 piece for Vanity Fair , the couple met in the late 1980s, when Cuomo launched a nonprofit organization to help the homeless, and Kennedy, a leading activist For human rights, he was creating his own nonprofit, the praised Robert F. Kennedy Center for Human Rights, named after his father. With similar interests and aspirations, the coupling made sense, but it also served as a symbolic fusion of two American political dynasties: the noble Kennedys and the ambitious Cuomos, whose patriarch, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, typified the intergenerational immigrant. success story.

Although the romance between the two seemed genuine, Andrew also knew that a union between them would be valuable political capital. According to Shnayerson, he allegedly secretly met with select members of the press to ask for their views on a Cuomo-Kennedy compromise before he even proposed. “Some of the journalists were known at best. Appreciated as sincere, the pre-proposal talk seemed strange to them, “Shnayerson wrote. Why would he share this intimate plan with them before explaining it to Kerry? And why worry about how the media would perceive it? »

Some sources believe that Cuomo’s strategies may have predicted the implosion of marriage even before it began.

Andrew and Kerry’s wedding marked the rise of ‘Cuomolot’

Andrew Cuomo and Kerry Kennedy were married in 1990, and their union became known as “Cuomolot” in the press, a nod to Kerry’s uncle, former President John F. Kennedy, and his administration’s association with the Arthurian legend Camelot. . But marriage turned out to be anything but a peaceful kingdom. According to Cuomo’s biography, The Contender , written by Vanity Fair Reporter Michael Shnayerson, behind the facade of political royalty, this alliance was plagued by internal strife and catastrophic tensions.

Red flags were present from the beginning. According to Shnayerson’s book, Cuomo placed an embargo on family toasts at the couple’s wedding. That decision reportedly broke with a long-standing Kennedy tradition and left the family horrified. No toast? The Kennedys were amazed, “Shnayerson wrote. Toast was the best part of a wedding, the more irreverent, the better. But that, apparently, was exactly why Andrew banned them. He did not want to risk unpleasant stories. This is not fun, the Kennedys muttered to each other. ”

Unfortunately, the dynamics only got worse from there.

Cuomo was “too wounded” for the Kennedy clan.

Andrew Cuomo never joined the sprawling Kennedy clan and allegedly disdained the family’s laid-back camaraderie, according to Cuomo biographer Michael Shnayerson. “I hated meetings at Hyannis; he always felt like a strange man. The comments, the carefree conversations: Andrew was too hurt to join, ”he wrote. The Contender (via Vanity Fair )

At one point, Cuomo reportedly stopped going to the Kennedy family complex on Cape Cod altogether, thus distancing his wife, Kerry Kennedy, from his family as well. When Cuomo began working for President Bill Clinton’s administration as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, he allegedly banned his friends and family from socializing at his and Kerry’s. According to Shnayerson, “The new rule reinforced the family’s doubts about Andrew from the start: It wasn’t fun; it didn’t get fun. It was, to put it mildly, a waste sport.

Arguably, all of those criticisms can be attributed simply to scuttlebutt and challenging family dynamics, but an unexpected and painful loss may have played a role in what appeared to be Andrew and Kerry’s sharp marriage decline.

Did Andrew Cuomo ‘intimidate’ the Kennedy family?

Some say that Andrew Cuomo’s behavior after a Kennedy family tragedy created an irreversible schism between the governor and his in-laws.

In 1997, attorney Michael Kennedy, 39, died in a ski accident, and according to The Contestant (via Vanity Fair ), The Kennedy family decided to close ranks and cry privately. Cuomo reportedly took a different tactic when he and his brother, Chris Cuomo, walked away from a meeting at the Kennedy family’s Hyannis Port compound to speak to the press lurking outside. Author Michael Shnayerson claims that the grieving family was traumatized by the actions of the Cuomo brothers.

Rory Kennedy (pictured left), who was with Michael the day his brother died and who attempted to save his brother’s life at the scene, reportedly asked Andrew why he spoke to reporters. According to Shnayeson’s account, Andrew believed that “the family was lucky that he was there to handle the moment. Wordlessly, Rory fled to his room upstairs. According to Douglas Kennedy, Andrew’s actions marked a turning point. It was reportedly when he began to think of Kerry Kennedy’s husband as nothing more than an opportunistic “bully”.

Politics brought them together and tore them apart

Andrew Cuomo’s strained relations with his wife’s family must have been difficult, but when combined with the pressures of a failed government deal, what remained of “Cuomolot” soon collapsed.

Cuomo’s first attempt to follow in the footsteps of his famous father, former three-term New York governor Mario Cuomo, was more or less a disaster. Voters were expected to favor Andrew’s 2002 gubernatorial campaign, but instead the Democrat reportedly changed his chances after harshly criticizing the leadership of current Republican incumbent George Pataki (pictured right) in response to September 11. According to The New York Times, “Mr. Cuomo rejected the suggestion that he was trying to use the terrorist attack to gain political advantage,” but regardless of intent, Cuomo’s tactic to bring down Pataki failed.

Cuomo reportedly withdrew from the governor’s primary in an effort to save face from a devastating defeat for Carl McCall (who ultimately lost to Pataki). The day after elementary school, on September 11, 2002, Kerry Kennedy “demanded a divorce,” according to The Contestant (via Vanity Fair ). the wife of the loyal candidate throughout the campaign, without missing a hint of the true state of their marriage. But now, it was enough ».

Andrew felt “betrayed” by Kerry’s cheating scandal

Despite Andrew Cuomo’s failed 2002 campaign for New York governor allegedly playing a role in the unraveling of his marriage to Kerry Kennedy, some sources allege that politics was not merely the reason their union fell apart.

According to The Contender (via Vanity Fair ), the governor campaign “made Kerry appreciate Andrew’s ability to work hard, and she had no doubt that he would be a good governor. Her problem with her husband was strictly personal. The book states that she wanted “more time with their families (particularly hers): more childcare options, more camaraderie, more love and support.”

Perhaps Kennedy found what he was looking for in professional polo player Bruce Colley because the tabloids had a field day reporting on an alleged romance between the very married “Romeo who played polo” and “cheating on Kerry.” According to Cuomo’s divorce lawyer, the politician felt “betrayed and saddened by his wife’s behavior” with someone he had apparently considered a friend, on CBS News . Kennedy allegedly told Cuomo to hit the salt and leave.

Although their divorce marked the proverbial fall of “Cuomolot,” the aftershocks continued to shape the political discourse.

The fall of ‘Cuomolot’ was only the beginning

The split between Andrew Cuomo and Kerry Kennedy went on for years, and both sides’ reputations have taken a few hits. They allegedly locked horns for child support for years, and the Kennedy camp accused Cuomo of supporting their three daughters: Michaela (born 1997) and the twins Cara and Mariah (born 1995). In 2014, Kennedy went to trial and was acquitted of DUI after declaring that he accidentally took the wrong prescription pills the day he was diverted from the road to another vehicle, by CNN .

Both exes are still active in high-profile social circles. She is the author of books on Catholicism, human rights and the legacy of her family and is president of the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Foundation. Meanwhile, his handling of the coronavirus in New York has made him a “social media superstar” and possibly an eventual candidate for President of the United States. Neither Kerry nor Andrew remarried after their divorce, and although “Cuomolot” did not last, their marriage changed the course of American politics in a way that can still be measured today.