Hochul plans to run for governor after finishing Gov. Cuomo's term
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul said Thursday that she plans to run for governor next year after finishing Gov. Andrew Cuomo's term.
In less than two weeks, Hochul will take over for Cuomo, whose term expires at the end of next year. Hochul made it clear that she wants the job and hopes to be the Democratic nominee in 2022.
"I am the most prepared person to assume this responsibility and I am going to ask the voters at some point to have faith in me again," says Hochul.
Analysts say she will need to make an impact early on in her upcoming administration.
"If she makes a good impression and it looks like she's in control and can be governor, you know the women's vote is very strong these days all over the country. And if the women of New York embrace her, that may be a message to the progressives that you don't have a chance to beat her," says political analyst Jerry Kremer.
Progressives, the prominent wing of the state's Democratic party, will be watching closely.
"I really think that's going to be one of her greatest challenges," says Assemblyman Ed Ra. "There's a huge progressive movement, super majority in both houses and she needs to find a way, I think, to move the state forward. But they're going to think they can push her to the left."
State Attorney General Letitia James, State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli and Rep. Tom Suozzi are among the Democrats considered potential nominees for next year's election, although none have publicly stated an intention to run.
Hochul supporters say she will do what she's done her whole political career -- focus on her constituents and try to deliver what they want.
"Ultimately she will be judged on how well she manages the state and one of the key things I think the public has every right to expect from her is whether or not she's able to install the sort of ethical guardrails so an out-of-control administration can never happen again," says NYPIRG Executive Director Blair Horner.
Although a lot will no doubt change between now and November of next year, a big advantage for Hochul will be her ability to raise millions in campaign contributions given her new job.