George Pataki: Cuomo For Governor Nearly Guarantees GOP Triumph

New York’s former Republican governor believes his party will regain control of the state’s executive manor house in 2022, especially if former Governor Andrew Cuomo runs for office again.

This prediction was made by former Republican Governor George Pataki.

Best Thing That Could Happen

George Pataki, who worked as governor of New York starting in 1995 to 2006, predicted if Andrew Cuomo ran as an independent candidate, it would “be the greatest thing that ever happened to the state.”

Cuomo “would get crushed” and the process would “almost assure a Republican victory.”

During an interview that aired on WABC 770 AM on a Sunday morning, he stated, “I just hope Andrew Cuomo chooses to participate in the race.” 

Pataki said Cuomo, who is “the most disliked political leader in New York state,” would choose not to run in a race in which he would only get support from “hardcore partisan Democrats.” 

Even if Cuomo does not enter the race and diverts support away from Gov. Kathy Hochul, who has the strong backing of the state’s Democrats, Republicans have a unique possibility for success in a state that is heavily Democratic. 

“New York is moving in the wrong direction. The governor, based on her record, is in a precarious position.”

“The third component you require is a strong candidate for the Republican Party. There are a number of them currently available.”

“To my knowledge, this is the first time we’ve had fantastic candidates competing in a primary, any one of whom I believe is capable of winning the general election,” Pataki said. 

Lee Zeldin, Rob Astorino (former Westchester County Executive), Andrew Giuliani (longtime Special Assistant to the President), and Harry Wilson (an industrialist) have all said they are running for the Republican nomination.

Controversy With Hochul

Since taking over as governor in August of last year, Hochul, who served as Cuomo’s lieutenant governor during his final term, has come under fire for many of her decisions since taking office.

The public relations disaster that ensued when she picked scandal-plagued former Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin as her running partner was caused by his resignation after federal bribery conspiracy accusations. He denies these accusations.

The state legislature worked feverishly to clear the way for Hochul to choose Rep. Antonio Delgado as his new running mate. 

Cuomo resigned under pressure from inside his party after a bombshell article from the state’s attorney general on August 3, 2021, which concluded that he sexually assaulted at least 11 women.

The erstwhile governor signified he could make a political rebound and contest Hochul, whose polling results have been plunging in recent weeks.

The Democratic primary was supposed to occur on June 28.

However, after New York’s congressional markers were ruled unconstitutionally gerrymandered by the highest court in the state, most primary races were moved to late August.