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Cynthia Nixon: What to know about the actress, activist and candidate for governor

Cynthia Nixon, seen here on Jan. 29, at

Cynthia Nixon, seen here on Jan. 29, at the People's State of the Union at Town Hall in Manhattan. Credit: Corey Sipkin


Cynthia Nixon, the actress best known as Miranda Hobbes in "Sex and the City," is running for governor of New York.

The Manhattan resident, 51, will challenge Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in the Sept. 13 Democratic primary, declaring in her campaign announcement video Monday that she is "sick of politicians who care more about headlines and power than they do about us."


An ally of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, she has served on the advisory board of the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City, a nonprofit that facilitates public-private partnerships, since the de Blasio administration began. Nixon has also been active in state politics and lobbied for same-sex marriage in New York before it was legalized in 2011.

She has been a longtime advocate for more funding for public schools and a critic of what she calls unequal distribution of education funds.

She married fellow education activist Christine Marinoni in 2012. Marinoni was a special adviser for community partnerships in the city’s Department of Education but has stepped down from her position in the administration, The New York Times reported. Marinoni spoke about her LGBTQ activism with City & State New York last year.

At "The People's State of the Union" in midtown in January, Nixon said the country’s democracy is under attack and Americans need to protect it. "We need to make sure that special counsel gets to conduct a thorough, unimpeded investigation," she said of Robert Mueller’s Trump-Russia probe, calling on people to take to the streets if Mueller is fired.

Nixon challenged her party to be "better Democrats" when she received the Human Rights Campaign's Visibility Award from the national LGBTQ group in February. "If we had bluer Democrats, New York wouldn't have the worst inequality in the country," she said, Politico New York reported. "For all the pride that we take here in being such a blue state, New York has the single worst income inequality of any state in the country — how can we know this fact and let it stand without actively working to change it?" (The group previously endorsed Cuomo, according to Politico.)

On March 7, Cuomo suggested that de Blasio may be behind Nixon’s then-potential gubernatorial bid, setting off yet another feud between the governor and mayor.

Cuomo has a large, early lead over Nixon among Democratic voters of 66 percent to 19 percent, a poll released Monday shows, though it was taken before she became announced her candidacy.


"There are a lot of people who would like me to run. And I think for a variety of reasons, but I think the No. 1 is education," Nixon told NBC’s "Today" show in August. She said about education funding, "That gap now between our richest schools and our poorest schools is wider under Governor Cuomo than it has ever been before, and that’s got to stop."


Nixon has three children, including one with Marinoni.


Since the NYC-set show ended its six-season run in 2004, Nixon appeared in the two ensuing movies in 2008 and 2010. Nixon won a Tony Award in 2017, for featured actress in a play, for the Broadway revival of Lillian Hellman's "The Little Foxes." It was the second Tony for Nixon, who also won for "Rabbit Hole" in 2006, and has a long history in the theater – debuting on Broadway when she was 14.

The actress played Emily Dickinson in the 2016 film "A Quiet Passion."

With reporting from Newsday, and The Associated Press

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