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Hochul, Zeldin will face off in November's election for Governor

New York Gov. Hochul addresses supporters at her victory party after the Democratic primary Tuesday.
New York Gov. Hochul addresses supporters at her victory party after the Democratic primary Tuesday.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul won Tuesday’s Democratic primary, her first contest in seeking a full term as governor. She’ll face Long Island Congressman Lee Zeldin in the November election.

Hochul, dressed in white, in an event venue in Tribeca that featured a literal glass ceiling, says she stands on the shoulders of generations of women.

“To the women of New York, this one’s for you,” Hochul said to the cheering crowd of supporters.

Hochul beat back challenges from New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, a progressive, and moderate democrat and Long Island Congressman Tom Suozzi. Neither candidate had much money, compared to Hochul’s multi million dollar campaign fund, or name recognition, and they failed to win significant support from voters.

If Hochul wins in November, she would be the first woman chosen by voters to ever hold the state’s highest elected office. Hochul replaced former Governor Andrew Cuomo when he resigned last August in a sexual harassment scandal. In the closing days of the campaign she focused on defending abortion rights and approving gun safety measures, two issues of concern for democratic voters. And she vowed to continue the fight, saying she won’t let “right wing extremists” win.

“And making the world know that New York State is a safe harbor for America’s women,” Hochul said. “You come here.”

Lieutenant Governor and former Congressman Antonio Delgado, and Hochul’s running mate, also won over progressive candidate Ana Maria Archila and moderate Diana Reyna.

Delgado has been in this post for just over a month. He replaced Hochul’s first choice, former lieutenant governor Brain Benjamin, who was indicted on federal corruption charges and resigned.

Delgado called for unity in the wake of the US Supreme Court rulings overturning Roe v Wade and New York’s restrictions on carrying concealed weapons, saying “dark forces” are exploiting hate and division.

“New York has always been ahead of the national curve, setting the pace,” Delgado said. “And now more than ever, we need New York to …hold the line.”

Republican Long Island Congressman Lee Zeldin won a close race, in a four primary, beating out Rob Astorino, Harry Wilson and Andrew Giuliani, son of Rudy Giuliani the former New York City Mayor and advisor to former President Donald Trump

Zeldin says New York is at a “breaking point” and high costs and taxes have led to rising outmigration. He blamed Hochul for high crime rates, saying she sold out to the liberals on issues like the bail reform laws that ended many forms of cash bail, and he promised to end all COVID-19 pandemic related mandates.

“In the state of New York, one party rule will end, Kathy Hochul will get fired,” Zeldin said. “We will restore balance and common sense to Albany again.”

There are twice as many registered Democrats as Republicans in New York, and Hochul is favored to win the general election in November.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of public radio stations in New York state. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.