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Andrew Cuomo: Bernie Sanders visit helped unify NY delegates

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo speaks at the NY

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo speaks at the NY Delegation Breakfast during the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pa., on Tuesday, July 26, 2016. Photo Credit: Newsday/Thomas A. Ferrara

PHILADELPHIA — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo called Bernie Sanders’ appearance Tuesday before the New York delegation a “powerful and significant” moment that could unite the two camps in the days after the Democratic National Convention.

Talking to reporters at the Philadelphia Convention Hall, Cuomo said Sanders’ appearance at the New York State Delegation breakfast helped ease some of the tension that has roiled other state delegations.

Cuomo did not identify those states, but California delegates have clashed openly at delegation events this week. At a Florida delegation breakfast Monday, Sanders supporters jeered outgoing Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Florida congresswoman.

“This morning was powerful and significant because you had a divided group in that room — you had Sanders supporters who were not yet ready to fully accept Hillary,” Cuomo said.

At the end of the meeting, the group “stood up, and they were united,” in the goal of defeating Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, Cuomo said.

Cuomo, who served as U.S. Housing and Urban Development secretary under President Bill Clinton, laughed when asked if his support of Hillary Clinton signaled he was gunning for a position in her administration, should she win.

“I’ve been in a Clinton cabinet, thank you very much,” Cuomo said. “I had a great eight years. I have no interest in serving in a Clinton cabinet. I just have an interest in serving as governor of New York.”

Cuomo said the date and time of his speech to the Democratic National Convention has not been finalized. He said he hoped it would be on Thursday, when the four-day convention comes to a close with Clinton accepting the nomination.

“This convention was more difficult than most conventions because of the division,” Cuomo said on his decision to stick around for the entire four-day convention. Cuomo spent one day at the 2012 convention in Charlotte, North Carolina when President Barack Obama accepted the nomination for a second term.

Earlier in the day, Cuomo spoke at an LGBT Caucus event at the Philadelphia Convention Hall, where he touted New York’s efforts to legalize same-sex marriage.

“New York is about acceptance,” Cuomo said at the event. “New York is about forging community. New York is about finding the common core and building on the commonality and building relationships. This campaign on the other side talks about building walls. We talk about building bridges. How do you find ways to connect people? That is what New York is all about.”

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