Gov. Kathy Hochul declared she will win the upcoming 2022 Democratic primary, as she cozied up to popular incoming New York City Mayor Eric Adams in front of business leaders Thursday.
“I see the big picture: I will win this primary,” Hochul, who has spent much of her time in New York City since replacing disgraced Andrew Cuomo last summer, proclaimed during a Midtown breakfast hosted by the Association for a Better New York.
Hochul named key priorities she would like to achieve as governor, such as getting workers to return to their Manhattan offices, stimulating the economy, bringing back jobs, reducing homelessness and crime — and said Adams will be a key connection to make those goals a reality.
“I so look forward to working with our incoming Mayor Eric Adams. People say, “Have you met the mayor yet? I’ve been working with him for seven years! What do you think I did as lieutenant governor? I know these people!” she gushed.
“I’ve been everywhere, and I know Eric Adams and we have shared values and a vision to bring this city and this state to a far better place.”
“As I said on election night, as I stood on the stage with Eric Adams I said: The era when the New York state governor is fighting with the New York City mayor is over and instead we’ll roll up our sleeves and fight for the people,” she said.
An upstate native from Buffalo, Hochul needs to make inroads to vote-rich downstate areas especially as she faces what’s expected to be tough primary challenges from two Brooklynites: state Attorney General Letitia James and city Public Advocate Jumaane Williams.
Adams would be a key ally for her in the upcoming year as she jockeys for endorsements and Hochul could also gift Adams negotiating power for city priorities in the state budget process.
“We also want to make people feel safe on the subways, on the streets. I walk around and I know people have this fear and anxiety — a feeling it’s not quite the way it was before the pandemic.”
“I’ll tell you, my friends New York City has faced crime before, we’ve overcome it and the fact that this was not a long slope into crime, it’s a sort spike downward that means you can pop up quickly and working for the City of New York, the new mayor, this is how we’re going to get it done,” she said.
Since taking office in August, Hochul has touted her approach toward local government and pledged to work with the new mayor of New York City — a departure from her predecessor, disgraced ex-Gov. Andrew Cuomo who famously feuded with outgoing Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Hochul joined Adams on stage during his victory speech on election night — an unprecedented move for the victor to share the microphone, which could signal a budding partnership between the pair.
Both leaders were seen together at multiple public receptions at the SOMOS political conference in San Juan, Puerto Rico at the beginning of November following Adams’ win.
Hochul also recently said she would give Adams a seat at the table when it comes to changing the state’s controversial bail-reform laws.
She’s also sought to expand her base in her recent hires, tapping ex-Harlem state Sen. Brain Benjamin to serve as her lieutenant governor and naming former NYC Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia as her new state Operations Director.
Meanwhile, Hochul announced roughly $15 million will be invested into a “Nurses for our Future Scholarship” to train 1,000 student nurses at SUNY and CUNY.
She said she will have more plans to unveil at her upcoming State of the State address held in January.