The call was echoed by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, who led the charge to oust Al Franken from the Senate. “The violent actions described by multiple women in this story are abhorrent,” she said in a statement. “Based on this extensive and serious reporting, I do not believe that Eric Schneiderman should continue to serve as attorney general.
Since 2017, Mr. Schneiderman had raised his profile nationally by taking on President Trump’s agenda repeatedly in the courts. He is pushing to change state law so that his office could prosecute Mr. Trump’s aides even if the president pardoned them.
Mr. Schneiderman, the chief law enforcement officer of the state, who was widely seen as harboring ambitions to be governor himself one day, was up for re-election this year. No Democrat had declared an intention to challenge him in the primary; Manny Alicandro, a corporate lawyer from New York City, is running as a Republican and officially declared his candidacy on Monday.
Women’s issues had been a focal point for Mr. Schneiderman, who had announced, for instance, a lawsuit against the company once run by the former filmmaker Harvey Weinstein, who was accused of decades of sexual misconduct. “We have never seen anything as despicable as what we’ve seen right here,” Mr. Schneiderman said then.
Ms. Manning Barish, in The New Yorker account, described being slapped by Mr. Schneiderman after they had both been drinking; she and Ms. Selvaratnam said several of the attacks occurred after alcohol had been consumed.
“It was horrendous,” she said. “It just came out of nowhere. My ear was ringing. I lost my balance and fell backward onto the bed. I sprang up, but at this point there was very little room between the bed and him. I got up to try to shove him back, or take a swing, and he pushed me back down. He then used his body weight to hold me down, and he began to choke me. The choking was very hard. It was really bad. I kicked. In every fiber, I felt I was being beaten by a man.”
Debra S. Katz, a lawyer for Ms. Manning Barish, said that it was Mr. Schneiderman’s “fantasy and his fantasy alone that the behavior was welcome.”