Kathy Hochul to become New York’s first woman governor with Cuomo resignation

Among the political players not interviewed in the sexual harassment probe that ultimately forced Gov. Cuomo out of office was Kathy Hochul.

Hochul, Cuomo’s lieutenant governor, managed to stay mum about the process, maintaining her busy schedule, crisscrossing the state to promote vaccinations and the economic recovery from the pandemic.

“We are in the throes of an investigation, which has been ongoing,” Hochul said last month when asked about her boss’ future. “There are multiple investigations, and it’s still very early in the process to make any conclusions as to political viability.”

New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul
New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul (Mark Lennihan/AP)

Not anymore. Cuomo’s out, and Hochul is in, and a new day has dawned in New York.

“I agree with Governor Cuomo’s decision to step down. It is the right thing to do and in the best interest of New Yorkers,” Hochul tweeted Tuesday.

“As someone who has served at all levels of government and is next in the line of succession, I am prepared to lead as New York State’s 57th Governor.”

Hochul, 62, may be a trivia question answer to many New York City voters, but she is well known in Albany and much of Upstate New York, especially Buffalo, the state’s second-largest city, which she represented in Congress for nearly a full term, the first Democrat to represent her district in 40 years.

Hochul is the first woman to become governor of New York.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul. (Mike Groll/AP)

While Hochul has been mostly silent on the Cuomo probe, she has made combating workplace sexual harassment and sexual assaults on college campuses a signature issue during her political career.”

“Everyone deserves to have their voice heard and taken seriously,” she said in February as calls for Cuomo’s resignation began.

Hochul has already received support from several corners.

“[The] concluding four month investigation and report from the office of NYS Attorney General Letitia James that finds Gov. Cuomo had violated New York State and Federal law leads me to demand that Gov. Cuomo resign today,” said Norman Green, chair of the Chautauqua County Democratic Committee. “I look forward to working with Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul as our next governor.”

Hochul is married to Bill Hochul, general counsel for Delaware North, which operates concessions, premium dining, and retail at Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park.

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