Gotham Gazette

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Citizens Union


NY Governor

«Attorney General Comptroller»



 Governor Andrew Cuomo

Rob Astorino


Michael Mcdermott

Andrew Cuomo
(D, WF, WEP, I)


Rob Astorino
(R, SCC)

Howie Hawkins

Michael McDermott

Steven Cohn




Cuomo (D, WF)

Governor Andrew Cuomo

Andrew Cuomo (D, WF)

Campaign Website
Twitter - Campaign's Handle
Facebook - Offical Governor's Page
Twitter - Official Governor's Handle

On the Issues


Lieutenant Governor Running Mate: Kathy Hochul

Currently: NYS Governor (2011-present)

Previous Work: NYS Attorney General (2007 - 2011); Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (1997 - 2001); Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development, HUD (1993 - 1997); Chairman, New York City Commission on the Homeless (1991 - 1993); Assistant District Attorney, Manhattan (1984 - 1985); Partner at the law firm of Blutrich, Falcone & Miller; Counsel at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson

Education: JD, Albany Law School; BA, Fordam University

On the Issues

Civil Rights

Women's Rights:

Stated that he is committed to the entire ten-point Women's Equality Act, which he proposed in 2013 and which failed to pass in the legislature in 2014. The bill package includes legislative reforms to: end pregnancy and workplace discrimination and sexual harassment; mandate equal pay for equal work, protect against human trafficking, domestic violence; and codify in NYS law the abortion access standards as set forth in Roe v. Wade. 

Subsequently stated, when the package was met with controversy, that it would be "absurd" and "unimaginable" to keep he 10-points together, despite the concerns of many women's rights advocates and Democratic leaders that splitting the agenda would be tantamount to ensuring the failure of the abortion access provisions.  NY State of Politics

Discrimination in Schools:

Proposed legislation to ensure that all students are afforded protection against discrimination, and to require all public schools to: promptly notify the State Education Department (SED), the Division of Human Rights and the State Police of patterns of racial or religious discrimination or harassment; and to implement SED-constructed plans to remedy discrimination. This legislative package, proposed in 2014, was not taken up by either house of the legislature. Capital


Cuomo's View of the Economy:

"We have turned the corner, the arrows are pointed in the right direction and the best is yet to be. The ship had to be turned, but the ship is turned and the momentum is with us and we're going to keep it going." NY State of Politics 

Proposed the following in his 2014 legislative agenda, introduced in his State of the State Address in January:

  • to "freeze property taxes for two years, providing nearly $1 billion in tax relief. Residents will be eligible for the freeze in the first year if their local governments stay within the property tax cap. During the second year, local governments must also take concrete steps to share services and reduce costs in order to remain under the freeze."
  • to provide tax relief based on ability to pay for households that earn up to $200,000.
  • refundable personal income tax credit that takes into account a family's size, available to renters making less than $100,000.
  • refundable credit that would be equal to 20 percent of a firm's annual real property taxes.
  • to eliminate the corporate income tax rate for Upstate manufacturers.
  • to merge the bank tax into the corporate franchise tax and lower the rate to 6.5 percent.
  • to increase New York's exemption threshold for the estate tax to match the federal government, and lower the top rate to 10 percent over four years.
  • to accelerate the phase-out of the 18-A Utility surcharge.
  • to create a joint commission with the state Legislature to identify ways to eliminate regulatory barriers that "make it difficult to do business in New York State and hinder economic growth."
  • to launch "Global NY," which would link START-UP NY and the Regional Economic Development Council initiatives, aiming to attract international investment and jobs to Upstate New York.
  • to establish the "NY Genomic Medicine Network – a partnership that will link the medical community in New York City with the University at Buffalo's computational infrastructure and biomedical research expertise at the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus – to develop Upstate New York as a national center for genomic medicine research and jobs."
  • to increase the number of MWBE certified firms (firms operated by women or minorities) by an additional 2,000.

Minimum Wage:

  • Supports an increase in the minimum wage to $10.10, and indexing it to cost-of-living adjustments, as stated at the Working Families Party convention.
  • Directed the state Department of Labor to evaluate potential changes to the state's minimum wage for tipped workers: "When the legislature enacted my proposal to increase the minimum wage, thousands of New Yorkers saw their economic prospects improve. Now, to build on that momentum I am directing Labor Commissioner Peter Rivera to call a Wage Board and hold public hearings to ensure fairness and determine if changes need to be made to the regulations that govern the rates paid to service workers." NY State of Politics

Granted CBS Corp. a combined $16 million package of tax credits and grants from the state over the next five years to keep the Late Show in New York City. NY State of Politics 


Proposed the following in his 2014 legislative agenda, introduced in his State of the State Address in January:

  • to make pre-kindergarden universal in NYS
  • a $2 billion "Smart Schools" bond referendum to provide students with state-of-the-art classrooms and leverage technology to transform education. On November 4, 2014, New Yorkers will vote to approve or reject the school bond, and the exact amount of funds allocated to each school district - this is ballot proposal 3.
  • to provide full tuition scholarships to any SUNY or CUNY college or university to the top 10 percent of high school graduates if they pursue a STEM career and then work in New York for five years.
  • to create a Teacher Excellence Fund to help school districts reward the most effective teachers, who could receive up to $20,000 in annual supplemental compensation.
  • another round of NYSUNY 2020 and NYCUNY 2020, which would "award plans that use technology to improve academic success and economic development, leverage opportunities for public-private partnerships through START-UP NY, and provide experiential learning opportunities such as internships to better connect students to the workforce." 

Launched the NYS Community Schools initiative, to provide grants to 30 schools for extracurricular activities, social services, and health care within schools; set a goal of expanding it to 200 schools in 4 years. Unedited Politics UFT

Initiated the NYS Master Teacher Program, which gives high-performing secondary science and mathematics teachers who mentor other teachers the opportunity to receive an additional $15,000 annually over four years. The program has been managed by SUNY, and is via application only. Press Release Buffalo News

As part of his 2013-2014 Executive Budget, Cuomo brokered a public-private partnership between the state and IBM, built on IBM'S Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) in New York City, in which ten schools would provide students with a six year joint high school, college, and career training program designed to prepare students for high-skill careers in science, technology and engineering and lead to jobs at IBM. Press Release 

Pushed for the "Smart Schools Bond Act," a program aimed at introducing new technology to poorer public schools, including laptops, tablets, and high-speed internet. He has proposed a $2 billion bond as a means of funding the project. The funding allocations will be decided on by the voters in a referendum on Election Day, and sets out the exact funding allocated to the counties or municipal education departments. NYSUT

Established the New NY Education Reform Commission in April 2012 to examine and reevaluate the state's education system, including teacher recruitment processes, implementing technology in classrooms, and family engagement. In 2013 the Commission released a set of recommendations including the implementation of a bar exam for teachers, extending school hours, and providing public prekindergarten in poorer districts. New York Times 


Proposed the Reforming the Energy Vision via the NY Department of Public Services Commission, intended to reevaluate the role of distribution utilities and the current regulatory structures in New York in a changing energy climate, by: improving customer knowledge and tools to better manage their energy bills; leveraging ratepayer contributions; making the system more efficient, reliable, and resilient; and diversifying fuel and resources.  

Government Accountability

Centered his 2010 campaign platform on cleaning up Albany, from ethics reform to improving the budget process. WNYC 

The Moreland Commission:

  • Cuomo appointed the Moreland "Commission to Investigate Public Corruption," tasked with "[probing] systemic public corruption and the appearance of such corruption in state government, political campaigns and elections in New York State."
  • The Moreland Commission operated from July 2013 until Cuomo disbanded it in March 2014.
  • Its dissolution has sparked a conversation over whether its operations were independent.
  • Upon its formation, Cuomo stated that it could investigate any campaign or branch of goverment, including his own.
  • Cuomo has since stated that a "commission appointed by and staffed by the executive cannot investigate the executive."
  • Following the New York Times' investigation calling into question the independence of the Moreland Commission in July 2014:
  • Cuomo stated that the commission was indeed independent, as evidenced by commissioners' disagreeing with his staff. 
  • Cuomo is currently under investigation by U.S. Attorney General Preet Bharara for possible witness tampering or obstruction of justice in the aftermath of the New York Times piece, when individuals involved with the Moreland Commission publicly stated that their work was indeed independent, possibly at Cuomo's urging.
  • Cuomo has decided to use campaign funds rather than government funds to pay for a lawyer to represent his office in investigation of the Moreland Commission. 

Oversaw the passage of 4 budgets which were passed on time.

Approved a bill creating 25 additional family court judgeships, including nine in New York City, in response to increasing pressure from the New York State Bar Association and high strain on the state's overloaded family court system. Times Union


Oversaw the creation of the New York Health Benefit Exchange, NY state's insurance exchange in line with President Obama's Affordable Care Act. 

Proposed $900,000 in funding for health projects on SUNY campuses supported by the SUNY Health Network of Excellence, to go . The funding will go to six projects researching causes, treatments and cures for diseases and brain disorders, including one involved in Alzheimer's research, and one in developing integrated data repositories. Syracuse.com

Proposed the "Bending the Curve" program, with the stated aim of eliminating AIDS in New York State by identifying undiagnosed cases of HIV, increasing access to health care and anti-HIV therapy, and promoting the use of the preventative drug Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP): "\through this comprehensive strategy, we are decreasing new HIV infections to the point where by 2020, the number of persons living with HIV in New York State will be reduced for the first time." 

Secured agreements for bulk discounts from pharmaceutical companies representing 70 percent of the HIV drug market in an attempt to make such medication more accessible and affordable. NYTimes 

Supports legalization of medical marijuana in NY, with conditions: a prohibition against smoking marijuana; a seven year sunset clause, such that the law would expire unless renewed; a kill switch, such that the governor can shutter the program upon the recommendation of "either the State Police superintendent or the commissioner of health, if there is a risk to the public health and the public safety." City and State


Proposed to build and restore more than 14,000 affordable housing units statewide.

Proposed a $100 million additional investment to build and preserve 3,000 additional affordable housing units in multi-family developments. 


Stated commitment to passage of the DREAM Act in 2014, which would provide college tuition assistance undocumented immigrant students. The bill failed to pass in the legislature. Daily News

Was criticized in 2012 for lack of commitment to the DREAM Act. The Guardian

Created the Office for New Americans, aimed at assisting new legal immigrants to the state (specifically foreign born), via localized neighborhood Opportunity Centers tasked with naturalization, overcoming language barriers, consumer protection, and business development training, among other things.


Proposes expediting construction projects that would be built wholly within existing electric transmission corridors or buried along existing State-owned rights of way such as waterways and highways.

Is overseeing construction of a replacement Tappan Zee Bridge, with funding from several environmental agencies. He has stated that the bridge is not only unable to cope with traffic demands, but also poses an environmental hazard. 


Proposed increasing the size of the NY Youth Works Program from $6 to $10 million for each of the next four years, incentivizing employee retention with additional tax benefits, and providing training funds to employers through the existing Job Linkage Program. 

Minimum Wage:

  • Supports an increase in the minimum wage to $10.10, and indexing it to cost-of-living adjustments, as stated at the Working Families Party convention.
  • Directed the state Department of Labor to evaluate potential changes to the state's minimum wage for tipped workers: "When the legislature enacted my proposal to increase the minimum wage, thousands of New Yorkers saw their economic prospects improve. Now, to build on that momentum I am directing Labor Commissioner Peter Rivera to call a Wage Board and hold public hearings to ensure fairness and determine if changes need to be made to the regulations that govern the rates paid to service workers." NY State of Politics 

Policing and Criminal Justice

Proposed the following in his 2014 legislative agenda, introduced in his State of the State Address in January:

  • to establish a Commission on Youth, Public Safety & Justice to provide concrete, actionable recommendations regarding youth in New York's criminal and juvenile justice systems.
  • to create the New York State Council on Community Re-Entry and Reintegration in order to "enhance the State's efforts to help formerly incarcerated individuals successfully re-enter and remain in the community, and ensure that State policies regarding a broad spectrum of issues are aligned with both federal and local efforts."
  • a new law that will suspend licenses for five years for drivers found guilty of two convictions for driving while intoxicated or driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol in a 3-year period. The law will also provide for full revocation of licenses for those drivers who have three such convictions in their lifetime.
  • a new law that will double the period of license suspension for those younger than 21 years old that are convicted of texting-while driving. 

Supported two bills raising the assault of a housing authority officer or crossing guard from a misdemeanor to a felony: "This critically important legislation will better protect hardworking employees who are charged with keeping children and families safe." Daily News 

Announced the formation of New York State Council on Community Re-Entry and Reintegration to address obstacles formerly incarcerated people face upon re-entering society and to address recidivism. The council is to promote collaboration among state, local, and private agencies and community groups to provide services to aid housing, employment, healthcare, education, behavior change, and Veterans' services. 

Recreation and Culture

Proposed the following in his 2014 legislative agenda, introduced in his State of the State Address in January:

  • to create the "NYS Adventure License – a driver's license that includes optional icons for all of an individual's lifetime license designations, such as the Boater Safety Certificate and the newly created lifetime State Parks' Empire Pass."
  • a new outdoors initiative to create 50 new access projects to connect hunters, anglers, bird watchers and other outdoor enthusiasts to untapped State-owned lands.
  • to create a new "Gaming Facility Location Board," in order to bring more destination resorts to Upstate and increase tourism.

Granted CBS Corp. a combined $16 million package of tax credits and grants from the state over the next five years to keep the Late Show in New York City. NY State of Politics

Sandy Recovery

Proposed the following in his 2014 legislative agenda, introduced in his State of the State Address in January:

  • "Replacing and repairing 104 older bridges at risk due to increasing flooding;
  • Implementing the largest reconstruction of the state's transit system in 110 years with $5 billion of federal funds;
  • Creating a statewide Strategic Fuel Reserve, and statewide gas station back-up power on critical routes throughout the state;
  • Hardening the state's electric grid and creating 10 microgrids for communities and buildings that can operate as "energy islands" in the event of a power outage;
  • Building new natural infrastructure to protect New York's coastline and communities, and provide advanced flood control for inland waterways;
  • Expanding the $650 million NY Rising Community Reconstruction program to allow 124 communities around the state to create their own individualized storm resilience plans."
  • "Building the most advanced weather detection system in the nation, with 125 interconnected weather stations to provide real-time warnings of local extreme weather and flood conditions;
  • Launching the nation's first College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security, and Cybersecurity;
  • Training a new Citizen First Responder Corps to make New York residents the best prepared in the nation to deal with emergencies and disasters;
  • Issuing special license plates for first responders."
  • the Penn Station Access Project to provide system resilience to protect Metro-North service in the event of natural or other disasters. The proposal involves "constructing four new stations in the Eastern Bronx and the purchase of new rail cars to support the new service. The project will for the first time connect these communities via commuter rail both to Manhattan's West Side and to the I-95 corridor."


Proposed steps to upgrade LaGuardia and JFK airports, including assuming management responsibility for airport construction from the Port Authority to ensure these critical transportation hubs are modernized efficiently and quickly.

Supported the formation of a "reinvention commission" to review the changing demands of climate change on the MTA in the coming years: "We have been operating the same subway system for the last 100 years," Cuomo's letter to M.T.A. chairman Tom Prendergast reads. "The next 100 years, however, look radically different for New York. The clear evidence of a changing climate in our nation makes more major storms like Superstorm Sandy a real and present threat. Increasing population, demographic shifts and record ridership pose new challenges to operating and maintaining our existing mass transit network. ... This commission needs to fundamentally reexamine our subway system to meet these needs and expectations." Capital New York 

Has opposed and continues to oppose the LIRR's threat to strike, and is in favor of continued negotiations between the MTA and the unions: "The unions' false belief that Congress would step in to mandate a settlement was a major impediment to any real progress. With this obstacle removed, it is now clear that the only path to resolution is at the bargaining table between the MTA and the unions, and they should proceed in good faith." NY State of Politics 


Organizations: Working Families Party; Stonewall Democratic Club of NYC; Amsterdam News; Empire State Pride Agenda; 1199 SEIU; Hotel and Motel Trades Council; The Daily News

Individuals: Former President Bill Clinton; Former Secretary of State and Senator Hillary Clinton; NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio; Congressman Brian Higgins; Congresswoman Louise Slaughter; Congressman Dan Maffei; Congressman William Owens; Congressman Paul Tonko; Congresswoman Nita Lowey; Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney; Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz; Albany County Executive Dan McCoy; Ulster County Executive Mike Hein; Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown; Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster; Dunkirk Mayor AJ Dolce; Lackawanna Mayor Geoff Szymanski; Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis; Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi; Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren; Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick; Canandaigua Mayor Ellen Polimeni; Syracuse Mayor Stephanie A. Miner; Auburn Mayor Michael Quill; Oswego Mayor Thomas Gillen; Cortland Mayor Brian Tobin; Utica Mayor Rob Palmieri; Cooperstown Mayor Jeffery Katz; Hornell Mayor Shawn D. Hogan; Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan; Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy; Saratoga Springs Mayor Joann Yepsen; Amsterdam Mayor Ann Thane; Troy Mayor Lou Rosamilia; White Plains Mayor Tom Roach; Kingston Mayor Shayne Gallo; Middletown Mayor Joseph DeStefano; Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano; Port Jervis Mayor Kelly B. Decker; Newburgh Mayor Judy Kennedy; Buffalo City Council President Darius Pridgen; Olean City Council President Ann McLaughlin; Rochester City Council President Loretta Scott; Syracuse Common Council President Van Robinson; Clinton County Board of Legislators Chairman Sam Dyer; St. Lawrence County Board of Legislators Chairman Jonathan Putney; Schenectady County Legislature Chair Tony Jasenski; Ulster County Legislature Chair John Parete; Ulster County Legislature Majority Leader Don Gregorious; Orange County Legislature Minority Leader Jeffrey Berkman; West Seneca Town Supervisor Sheila Meegan; Irondequoit Town Supervisor Adam Bello; Brighton Town Supervisor Bill Moehle; DeWitt Town Supervisor Edward M. Michalenko, Ph. D; Vestal Town Supervisor John Schaffer; Essex County Board of Supervisors Chairman and  Jay Town Supervisor Randy Douglas; Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Bernie Bassett; Potsdam Town Supervisor Marie Regan; Clarkstown Town Supervisor Alexander J. Gromack; Haverstraw Town Supervisor Howard Phillips; Stony Point Town Supervisor Geoff Finn; Rosendale Town Supervisor Jeanne Walsh; Saugerties Town Supervisor Greg Helsmoortel; Village of Fredonia Mayor Steve Keefe; Village of Waterloo Mayor Ted Young; Village of Penn Yan Mayor Leigh Mackerchar; Village of Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau; Village of Wappingers Falls Mayor Matt Alexander

Lieutenant Governor Running Mate

Kathy Hochul

Currently: VP of Government Relations at M&T Bank Corporation

Previous Work: Congresswoman (NY-26) (2011 - 2013); Erie County Clerk (2007 - 2011)

Education: JD, Catholic University; BA, Syracuse University


Astorino (R)

Rob Astorino (R)

Campaign Website
Twitter - Campaign

On the Issues


Lieutenant Governor Running Mate: Christopher Moss

Currently: Westchester County Executive (2010 - Present)

Previous Work: Station Manager at Sirius-XM Satellite Radio; Candidate for Westchester County Executive (2005); Member of Westchester Board of Legislators (2003 - 2005); Councilman on the Mount Pleasant Town Board, six years as deputy supervisor (1991 - 2003)

Education: BA, Fordham University

On the Issues


On the 2014 budget: "A state budget that raises spending by a nickel is a failed opportunity...New York is systematically dying because of over taxing and overspending, and, here again, we are adding to a taxpayer burden which is already the highest in the nation. ... I will use the budget process to identify savings to put back in the pockets of average New Yorkers, just like I did in Westchester...Until we strike a healthy balance between what we want and what we can afford, New York will continue to chase away jobs and remain on the losing path." Daily News


"Astorino froze or cut the county tax levy every year he has served, and he has reduced overall spending in the county by 5.2%, the most in real dollars of any county in New York State. [During his term as County Executive, Westchester received] the highest credit rating among counties in New York, and it has retained and attracted new businesses to the county, helping create 30,000 new private-sector jobs from 2010-2014."

Stated that "New York State is the highest taxed, most regulated, least business friendly state in the America under Governor Cuomo," and that he plans to "revitalize New York's stagnant economy."

Proposes to reform "New York's antiquated tax code and regulatory system, cut spending in real terms and reduce the cost of doing business in New York, ... attack high property taxes by providing real mandate relief to our local governments."

States that he "will rebuild our infrastructure and work with the private sector to form public-private partnerships, bringing manufacturing and high tech industries back to New York." 

"If we take our foot off their necks, reduce taxes in a meaningful way and be business friendly in this state as opposed to hostile to business, then we'll see the entrepreneurs set up shop here and have that next great idea happen in New York or just have companies decide to expand here. But it's not going to happen given the climate we have here and the taxes and the cost of living and the electrical rates. ... "Unless the state begins to reduce spending and live within its means and allow schools and local municipalities to really control their own costs, this will just continue to happen." The Citizen

Favors natural gas exploration in New York State: "President (Barack) Obama absolutely favors natural gas exploration and is encouraging it. The Interior Department, the energy secretary have all said we should be exploring natural gas. Thirty states permit it, including many Democratic governors. There are those in the environmental community that feel very strongly that if there are proper regulations, as we should have, then we should do it. The economic boom that would be unleashed for the Southern Tier, Central New York and all of New York would be incredible. Literally tens of thousands of people would go back to work with all different skill sets. It could change families for generations. We could use all that billions of dollars in revenue that comes into the state and local municipalities to lower taxes or to help education. And it's clean for the environment and it would help lower our energy costs." The Citizen


Has promised to unveil his own education plan after the primaries: "What we would replace [Common Core] with, I'll be revealing in September." City and State

Astorino has also said that he may consider salvaging certain elements of the Common Core: "It is certainly being considered. You know, if the foundation is broken, do you just continue to build, or do you rebuild the foundation so it's steady? So I think everything has to be on the table for this."

Proposes to "replace [Common Core] better standards, teaching and testing, all set and controlled at the local level."

"Washington and Albany overreach has never been more intrusive. New York State government is increasingly raiding school and municipal budgets through costly unfunded mandates and runaway pension costs. School districts and localities are given little flexibility to streamline expenses, driving up costs and forcing painful classroom cuts. Cuomo's Common Core is the latest example of invasive government overreach into local communities and classrooms. Common Core, as implemented, won't just hurt a generation of New York's children, it will impose yet another unfunded billion-dollar-plus mandate on already overburdened New York taxpayers. At the same time, Washington bureaucrats are badly disrupting personal and employee healthcare plans and threatening to seize control of local zoning in communities nationwide as part of a radical social engineering experiment. Westchester County has been at the forefront nationally in fighting back the Washington ideologues and bureaucrats." 

Supports an "education tax credit." Vimeo  

Supports charter schools in New York, and has criticized Cuomo for not supporting a tax credit proposal incentivizing donations to private school scholarship funds as well as public schools. Capital New York

Proposes to "promote vocational schools and enhanced job training programs to help develop and strengthen New York's workforce."

Election Reform

Proposed a 10-point ethics plan, including the following:

  • "Term Limits - Limit statewide elected officials to two terms (8 years) and state legislators to four terms (8 years).
  • Prohibit Personal Use of Campaign Money - Establish clear guidelines to limit donations solely to election-related activities."


Proposes to "[tap] into New York's vast energy resources, ... [and] approve clean and reliable natural gas exploration on day one, so we can lower electric rates, improve air quality, create tens of thousands of new jobs, and bring billions of dollars in new revenue to this state."

Favors natural gas exploration in New York State: "President (Barack) Obama absolutely favors natural gas exploration and is encouraging it. The Interior Department, the energy secretary have all said we should be exploring natural gas. Thirty states permit it, including many Democratic governors. There are those in the environmental community that feel very strongly that if there are proper regulations, as we should have, then we should do it. The economic boom that would be unleashed for the Southern Tier, Central New York and all of New York would be incredible. Literally tens of thousands of people would go back to work with all different skill sets. It could change families for generations. We could use all that billions of dollars in revenue that comes into the state and local municipalities to lower taxes or to help education. And it's clean for the environment and it would help lower our energy costs." The Citizen

As Westchester Executive, Astorino:

  • "helped amend the County Charter to require the purchase of high-mileage, hybrid and alternative-fuel vehicles."
  • "collaborated with local partners to realize important gains in making Westchester County's Hudson River waterfront."
  • "proposed over $25 million of capital investments in each of the last two years for county parks."  
  • "the Materials Recovery Facility in Yonkers has expanded recycling to include #3-7 plastics [during his term]."
  • advocated "for solar energy usage, through providing tax exemptions to homeowners who retrofit their homes with solar panels." 

Government Accountability

Stated: "New York is the most corrupt state in the country under Andrew Cuomo."

Stated: "The corruption by government officials in New York has reached a staggering level of embarrassment. The culture of corruption does not just affect the perpetrators, but average New Yorkers end up paying a stealth corruption tax as a result of these insider deals." Politics on the Hudson

Plans to "demand the resignation of Sheldon Silver as Assembly Speaker. Mr. Silver used hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to silence victims of sexual abuse in Albany in order to protect his political cronies. What did Governor Cuomo do? He protected Silver from being criminally investigated."

Proposed a 10-point ethics plan, which includes:

  • "Term Limits - Limit statewide elected officials to two terms (8 years) and state legislators to four terms (8 years).
  • Limit Legislative Session - Convene regular session the first week in January and end on April 1, when the budget is due; Special session throughout the year can be called by a petition request from two-thirds vote of both legislative houses or by the Governor as defined in the State Constitution.
  • Independent State Commission on Public Ethics (I-SCOPE) to replace J-COPE. Five members appointed by judiciary with independent budget to receive and investigate complaints of official misconduct, including sexual harassment and assault.
  • Strengthen FOIL - Require proactive online posting of records and information required for release under FOIL requests; Information would be posted on single statewide database managed by State Comptroller.
  • Defined Contribution Plan for Newly Elected - Require all newly elected officials to join SUNY's Defined Contribution Plan instead of the existing pension system.
  • Pension Strip - Loss of taxpayer-funded pension for any elected official convicted of public corruption.
  • Prohibit Personal Use of Campaign Money - Establish clear guidelines to limit donations solely to election-related activities.
  • Ban Conflict of Interest Member Items - No "member items" to any non-profit or business affiliated with a state elected official or an immediate family member.
  • Replace Per-Diem System and require receipts for travel, lodge and food.
  • End Taxpayer-funded Vanity - Prohibit any building, facility or capital project that was paid for with taxpayer money to be named for any current elected official." Lohud 

Called for more rigorous investigation of the Andrew Cuomo's involvement in the Moreland Commission, including the appointment of a special prosecutor by the Attorney General: "This is beyond outrageous. Obviously, it's criminal... Every step of the way [the Commission] took orders from Andrew Cuomo... In a way, what Eliot Spitzer did was nothing compared to this." NY State of Politics 


Believes that heroin is a topic that "must not remain in the shadows...We need to deal with the crisis head-on, all of us: parents,
elected officials, church and community leaders, before it gets worse. A heroin epidemic is the last thing New York needs right now."  Vimeo 

"I will not expand abortion into third trimester, which is what the governor was trying to do. And I think the vast majority of New Yorkers believe in my position as opposed to the governor's radical position... [Legal abortion in New York is] not going anywhere... My issue is not about abortion. My issue is about putting people back to work, lowering taxes so people can live here. That's what I'm going to be focused on." Capital New York

Faced criticism that in his term as Westchester County Executive, "the county closed four mental health clinics and passed the care of their clients on to nonprofit organizations. Overall county funding for mental health services fell from just under $18 million in 2010 to about $8.4 million in the current spending plan. Staffing at the county's Community Mental Health Department fell from 152 positions under Astorino's predecessor — Democrat Andrew Spano — to 74 this year. Astorino spokeswoman Jessica Proud defended the moves as an effort to streamline programs and provide better care at a lower cost to taxpayers. 'By being able to reduce overhead, it allowed more money to go toward the programs that were actually helping people,' Proud said." Daily News


Proposes to "rebuild our infrastructure and work with the private sector to form public-private partnerships, bringing manufacturing and high tech industries back to New York."

Policing and Criminal Justice

On the NYSAFE Act: "I would. I would absolutely move to repeal the law because it's a law that will not do anything to make us safer... If you really want to make our communities safer, then we should be treating violence as a disease. We should be really scrutinizing and
strengthening the mental health system... Demonizing law-abiding citizens is not the answer to gun violence." The Citizen


Organizations: Republican Party of New York State; Conservative Party of New York

Individuals: Former Rep. Rick Lazio; Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (D-9); Former Governor George Pataki; Councilman Eric Ulrich (D-32); Carl Paladino

Lieutenant Governor Running Mate


Christopher Moss

Currently: Chemung County Sheriff (2005 - Present); President, New York State Sheriff's Association

Previous Work: 

Education: Masters, Public Administration at Marist College;
BA, SUNY Empire

Hawkins (G)


Howie Hawkins (G)

Campaign Website
Twitter - Campaign

On the Issues


Lieutenant Governor Running Mate: Brian Jones

Currently: Political activist; Secretary of the Board, Eat to Live Food Cooperative

Previous Work: Co-founder of the US Green Party; Co-founder of the Clamshell Alliance; Candidate for Governor (2010); Candidate for Congress (NY-25) (2008); Candidate for US Senate (2006); UPS employee

Education: Dartmouth College

On the Issues


Hawkins proposes the following wage reforms:


  • "A state $15/hour minimum wage, indexed to productivity.
  • Home rule for municipalities to set a higher than state level minimum wage.
  • Includ[ing] tipped workers in the minimum wage increase.
  • Enforc[ing] minimum wage and labor laws.
  • Increas[ing] funding and staffing for the Department of Labor in order to rapidly resolve the 14,000 case backlog of years old complaints about unpaid wages.
  • End[ing] wage theft, which amounts to $1 billion a year in New York City alone."


Proposes establishing a state-owned bank: "Create a state-owned bank to finance public projects and private businesses at lower cost than private banking. Between 35% and 40% of the cost of public projects is interest on borrowing. When the state owns the bank, it gets this interest back, which it can use finance more projects at less cost than borrowing from private investors. The state bank would be capitalized by the deposits of state tax revenues, a portion of state pension funds, and private individuals, businesses, and pension funds that want to invest in the future of New York. This capital would then be invested in productive ventures in New York State that benefit the people."


"State policy should support the development of unionized worker- and consumer-owned cooperatives in place of corporate welfare giveaways to investor-owned businesses. Cooperatives distribute the net income ("profit") created by the co-ops' members in proportion to each members contribution. For worker co-ops the contribution is labor. For consumer co-ops the contribution is purchases. Co-ops therefore create a just and fair distribution of the net income of the business in contrast to investor-owned businesses where the investors capture all the profits.


The state bank should have a technical assistance arm to provide business planning, technical assistance, and mentoring for the
development worker and consumer cooperatives.


The state should partner with labor unions in creating unionized co-ops that combine worker or consumer ownership with collective
bargaining in a way makes the workplace more participatory and accountable to workers and protects the needs of workers as both owners and workers of the co-op.


Cooperatives are how we can own our own jobs because they locally owned, democratically controlled, and have no incentives to move jobs
and capital out of state."



Proposes to:

  • "Eliminate the Gap Elimination Adjustment and the state-mandated local tax cap."
  • Provide "100% Foundation Aid for public schools."
  • Provide "fully funded, full day, and developmentally appropriate Universal Pre-K and Kindergarten with certified and unionized educators."
  • "Opt out of high-stakes testing for students, teachers, and schools."
  • "Opt out of Common Core and Race To The Top."
  • "Opt into common standards, curricula, and diagnostic tests written by professional teachers in the schools, not by outside corporate contractors."
  • "Opt into teacher and school evaluation based on collaboration."
  • Support "state legislation to reduce class sizes and case loads."
  • Provide "free tuition at CUNY, SUNY, and Community Colleges."


"We're saying opt-out of high-stakes testing, which is the road to privitization, it's designed to fail schools and turn them into private charters. We say opt out of Common Core, let our teachers--not some corporate contractors--write the test." Youtube 



Election Reform

Hawkins voluntarily capped his individual donations at $2,600 to match the permissible maximums in federal elections. He also does not accept contributions from for-profit corporations and businesses. NY State of Politics

Proposes "ending the loss of voting rights for felons and parolees. Denying voting rights is not much of a punishment. Encouraging felons to participate in civic affairs can be part of rehabilitation and reintegration into society after serving time." 




"We want to commit to one hundred percent clean energy by 2030." Youtube

"The Green New Deal starts with the Economic Bill of Rights that Roosevelt called for in 1944 in his State of the Union Address asking that Congress enact legislation so that everyone... who's willing and able to work could have a job, living wages, good education, affordable housing, healthcare. Now, the Green New Deal part is that we've got to deal with the climate crisis and ecological crisis and affordable energy... The state energy draft plan is too little too late. They call for eighty by fifty—eighty percent reduction below 1990 levels of carbon emissions by 2050. The climate science says that's too little too late." WCNY

"We need a smart grid, so... every home, every business, every office, can be a power plant with solar rooftops, wind generators. You build out that infrastructure with a smart grid so you can sell your surplus and buy when you need it. You get distributed generation... It's sunshine. The sun shines, the wind blows, the waves lap at our shores—that is basically free energy once you set up the system to capture it. That reduces energy costs... Building out that clean energy system with commercially available technology, in fifteen years, it's a $600 mil investment, and would create 4.5 million jobs." WCNY

"We want clean energy from the abundant energies of the sun, wind, and water - energy that is so widely distributed that every home and business can capture, use, store, and share it. We want a future without the coal, oil, and gas burning that is heating up our only planet." 

Proposes to "build in 15 years a full clean energy system based on distributed renewable energy production, hydrogen fuel cell energy storage, electrified transportation, solar-based heating and cooling, and an interactive smart grid."

Proposes to ban all new Fossil Fuel Infrastructure. "No new gas pipelines. No Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) export facilities. No railway tank cars, tank trucks, or liquid cargo barges carrying Bakken fracked shale oil or Alberta tar sands bitumen through New York State."


Proposes to shut down Indian Point entirely, combined with "a rapid phase out [of] all New York nuclear power plants."

"It is time to democratize the utilities and fossil-fuel industries under public ownership and democratic control. The road to solar power is public power. We need a public energy system to realize the goal of 100% clean energy by 2030."




Proposes "a publicly-funded, single-payer health care program for all New Yorkers," in which all medically necessary services [are] covered," without co-pays or deductibles.




Proposes the following:

  • "Repeal the Urstadt Law.
  • Statewide income-based tax credits for renters.
  • Statewide income-based property tax circuit breaker for homeowners.
  • Provide rent stabilization coverage for all Mitchell-Lama and project-based Section 8 buildings that have left government supervision.
  • Moratorium on home foreclosure.
  • Require refinancing of mortgages at homes' current market values.
  • State funding for underfunded public housing authorities.
  • Build new high-quality, mixed-income public housing."


"We need to make housing affordable for all New Yorkers, not just the rich, the landlords and the gentrifiers. In addition to a rent freeze, we need all levels of government to take action to ensure affordable housing, including expanding rent subsidies and building and improving public housing. Families should not have to pay more than 30% of their income for housing." 




Proposed numerous initiatives as part of his "Green New Deal," including:

  • Public jobs for the unemployed in public works and public services to meet community-defined needs;
  • A state-funded and locally-planned full employment program;
  • A state $15/hour minimum wage, indexed to productivity;
  • Home rule for municipalities to set a higher than state level minimum wage;
  • Including tipped workers in the minimum wage increase;
  • Enforcing minimum wage and labor laws;
  • Increase funding and staffing for the Department of Labor in order to rapidly resolve the 14,000 case backlog of years old complaints about unpaid wages;
  • Ending wage theft, which amounts to $1 billion a year in New York City alone.
  • A living income above poverty for all who cannot or should not work.


Policing and Criminal Justice

"The Governor should appoint a Truth, Justice, and Reconciliation Commission charged with examining and addressing the impact of the War on Drugs and Mass Incarceration in New York State, including the devastating and lingering impact on people and communities of color. The Commission would assess the impact, hear from the people affected, and recommend policies to end mass incarceration and repair its damages."

"New York State should raise the age of adult criminal responsibility to 18. New York and North Carolina are the last two states that automatically send children who turn 16 into the adult criminal justice system. More than 30,000 youth were treated as adults in New York's criminal justice system in 2013. More than 600 children from 13 to 15 years old were also sent into the adult criminal justice system for certain offenses last year. Children's brains, characters, and personalities are still developing. They should be sent into the juvenile justice system for offenses. Children incarcerated in adult facilities are more likely to suffer physical and emotional abuse. Children prosecuted as adults to return to prison at higher rates than those prosecuted in juvenile courts. Treating children as adults in the criminal justice system undermines the goal of rehabilitating youth and protecting public safety."

Proposes to "opt into affirmative action to reduce school segregation by race and class, such as regional inter-district transfer programs."

Recreation and Culture

When asked what sort of ball he would throw if elected: "I would throw a Jubilee Ball to celebrate canceling the debt of students and predatory mortgages. People could bring their loan papers to shred into confetti and write their balloon payments on actual balloons. We'll end prohibition of cannabis, so people can celebrate as they see fit. It'd be a zero waste event. No water bottles. Hydration station water fountains, composting. Food served would be sourced from within 300 miles of the Jubilee Ball. Beer would be served in the Ommegang Brewery Beer Garden. The performers we would invite would include Arcade Fire, Immortal Technique, Chuck D, Ozomatli, Rebel Diaz, Erykah Badu, Kathleen Hannah and the Julie Ruin, Ani DiFranco, Las Cafeteras, Eddie Vedder, Nirvana with Krist Novoselic and Joan Jett, Natalie Merchant, Tom Morello, Rubblebucket Orchestra, Thunderbody, Sophistafunk, Taina Asili y la Banda Rebelde, Pussy Riot, and the Rude Mechanical Orchestra."  Noisey


Proposes to "build an electrified rail and vehicle transportation system that includes convenient and affordable intra-urban mass transit, inter-urban rail for intermediate distances, and high-speed rail for long distances."

Proposes to "fully fund the MTA capital program to maintain the good repair of the New York City region's mass transit system." 


Organizations: Green Party of New York State; New Progressive Alliance; New York Badass Teacher's Association; United Opt Out; International Socialist Organization; Socialist Alternative; Solidarity

Individuals: CUNY Graduate Center Professor Stanely Aronowitz; Co-Director, Campaign for Peace and Democracy Joanne Landy; Political Activist Ralph Nader

Lieutenant Governor Running Mate


Brian Jones


Currently: Public School Teacher; Doctoral Student in Urban Education, CUNY Graduate Center

Previous Work: Founding member, Movement of Rank and File Educators

Education: MA, City College of New York

McDermott (L)

Michael Mcdermott

Michael McDermott (L)

Campaign Website

On the Issues


Lieutenant Governor Running Mate: Christopher Edes


Previous Work: Candidate for Congress (NY-3) (2012); Real estate broker and developer (2001-2008); President of the Hauppauge School Board (1987-1989)


On the Issues


"As I look around at the places I visit on my quest to become Governor of New York State, I see firsthand the damage, heartache & suffering that has come from our states faltering economy. Things are bad all over–all of us are feeling it, and it's time for someone to stand up and make a change. It's time for US to make a change.

No matter how many times I hear about the economic 'recovery', all I see is a cover-up. There is no recovery and we all know it.
When I left New York some years ago, I left as a successful real estate broker who saw a thriving economy in his rear view mirror. I never thought that when I returned, it would be a painful shell of what it formerly was. Though the banking scandals and real estate bubble of only a few years ago may have caused this mess to happen, people aren't able to get back into their homes nor back into business because of some very simple and clear to point out problems...and the first one is over regulation.

Government, once again sticking its hand into what it does not understand, has caused a situation in New York (and especially on Long Island) a situation so odious that no one can get anywhere in the matters of business. Government has yet to understand that by only freeing the producers of this nation from regulations can they go on to live their dreams and make the products that benefit us all. Imagine if Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos had to deal with the regulations we have here, now, when they created Apple Computers & Amazon.com respectively. Could they even have created these two empires (as some would call them) that have come to benefit the people by untold millions? I have to wonder.
Until government gets out of the way, our States prosperity will never return, and nor will the countless number of young people who have been leaving our state in what many have called (rightfully) an exodus in the hopes of looking for the jobs and futures that this great state
once had. I think it can have it again and I know we can do it together."


Opposes Common Core and pledged to end it:

"Common Core is one of the most important and personal issues in my opinion. Not only because of the enormity of the backlash towards it that has come from countless parents across New York, but because I am one of those parents opposed to it. My daughter Gracie, my youngest, is forced to deal with this debacle of overreach and I have come to see it at the proverbial straw that has broken the camel's back. Do what you want to me, but stay away from my daughter--stay away from our children!

The system we had before wasn't the best, but at least parents could help their children with it. This nightmare even removes us from this equation as the 'problems' that Common Core puts before our children are so convoluted and (quite frankly) bizarre that we can't help our children with them. Only the schools, the teachers–the State–are able to help our children out, setting into motion the further degradation of the bonds between us and our children, an outcome that I cannot help but believe was part of the reason behind the creation of Common Core in the first place.

Our children are our most important gift and once again government and big corporations have found a way to further drive us away from each other. I cannot help but think of these words from John D. Rockefeller: 'I do not want a nation of thinkers, I want a nation of workers.'
Can Common Core give our children any future but this one? I think not, and neither do you, which is why I pledge to put a stop for it once and for all."


Opposes the Affordable Health Care Act mandate:

"Obamacare quite roundly epitomizes one of the major realities of our entire nation that I stand against: corporatism, the control of our nation by unaccountable corporations who use the power of government to make us buy their (often defective) products. As Glenn Greenwald wrote for The Gaurdian (in an extraordinary article you all must read): "'Whatever one's views on Obamacare were and are: the bill's mandate that everyone purchase the products of the private health insurance industry, unaccompanied by any public alternative, was a huge gift to that

And a gift it was. Our nation once had the best healthcare system in the world. Kings, Queens & the wealthiest of the world once came to our shores for their major healthcare needs, but decades of government bureaucracy, the corporate revolving door & favors/kickbacks to the medical industry (Medicare Part D, anybody?) have turned our healthcare industry into a shell of its former self, and this mandate has without a doubt sounded the death nail for it if we do not some way work together to get rid of it.

Fortunately, people across the nation, Democrat & Republican alike, have realized what a boondoggle this legislation is and the time is right to simply get rid of it. Not 'fix' it or 'modify' it, but simply throw it out into the trash and get things back to what they were before the cronyism started destroying our means for protecting our people's health.

As governor I will end New York's participation in this disaster and look to the free market to offer the best solution–as it always has (until governments decide to stick their hands into things). As bad as things look now we can get out of it."

Policing and Criminal Justice

Stated that the NYSAFE Act must be repealed:

"The rage over The SAFE ACT isn't about guns, it's about rights! What if it was the 1st Amendment being trampled on or the 4th in such an egregious way.  Many of you reading this may not like guns but you cannot be for penalizing honest Americans for a crime they did not commit! We live in an age of violence–yes, but has going after the law-abiding ever made things better? I think not, and if you think hard enough, you'll realize that this is true.

The SAFE ACT must be repealed and thrown into the trash bin of history with a myriad of other ill-conceived 'measures' to 'keep us safe' from that which is supposedly lurking in the dark." 

Has promised to "propose, promote, and sign legislation to remove all red light cameras in New York State." 





Lieutenant Governor Running Mate

 Chris Edes

Christopher Edes

Currently: Web developer and information technology consultant; Board of Directors, Genesee Valley Civil Liberties Union; Chair of the Monroe County Shooters Committee on Political Education

Cohn (Sapient)


Steven Cohn (Sapient) 

Campaign Website  


Previous Work:


On the Issues

*Research Ongoing

*Research ongoing




Lieutenant Governor Running Mate



Candidates' statements are taken from their respective websites and press releases, unless otherwise noted.