In debate with Nixon, Cuomo vows to serve full third term

30 August, 2018, 16:29 | Author: Valerie Santiago
  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is scheduled to debate gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon in Long Island on Wednesday night

NY state governor Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon, Broadway actor and former Sex and the City TV star, clashed and swapped insults in their only scheduled, televised debate before their primary race to decide the Democratic nomination for the governorship.

"The only caveat" - the crowd groaned - "is if God strikes me dead", Cuomo said.

While the testy exchange featured plenty of interruptions and insults, neither candidate landed the political equivalent of a knockout blow likely to significantly alter the race. "It's about doing. This is real life". You need to know how to do it'.

Cuomo responded that no one has been more aggressive against Trump than him, and at a later point added, "There is only one corporate Democrat on this stage".

Observers had predicted that Nixon would attempt to rattle the governor in the hopes that he would misspeak.

Cuomo painted Nixon, who won an Emmy for her portrayal of lawyer Miranda Hobbes on the HBO show "Sex and the City", as inexperienced and naive about the practicalities of NY politics.

"Can you stop lying?" she replied.

Nixon attempted to tie Cuomo to the recent conviction of his former top aide, Joe Percoco, on charges that he accepted bribes from companies seeking state economic development funds.

"You are a corporation", Cuomo said. 'Either corruption or incompetence, which is it?'

Cuomo laid out a series of reforms he said the state should adopt to deal with Albany corruption.

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Mr Cuomo frequently rebuffed them as flawed and unworkable.

Nixon was not asked to explain what exactly it meant to be a democratic socialist, but did say she would forfeit the salary of the governor given her identification as one.

'Ideally Nixon would have wanted this debate to happen three months ago, ' he said.

Cuomo also cited Trump as part of the reason he won't run for President in 2020, saying, "But part of the largest threat [to New York] today is President Trump". Right at the start, Cuomo said that part of the job of New York's governor is to "fight Donald Trump, who is the main risk to the state of NY".

Nixon campaign senior advisor Rebecca Katz told WCBS-TV that because work environments are "notoriously sexist when it comes to temperature", they "just want to make sure we're all on the same page here".

'Yes, yes, yes and yes, ' he said in response.

Ms Nixon scoffed at Mr Cuomo's depiction of himself as a fierce opponent of the president, who like the two candidates is a New York City native. Nixon has been a close ally. The victor faces Republican Marc Molinaro and independent Stephanie Miner in the November election.

Registered Democrats outnumber Republicans in NY by more than 2-1.

Nixon, an actor who starred in Sex and the City and is making her first run for office, pointed to her experience as a public-school parent and an activist for LGBT rights and education funding.


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