ALBANY — Challengers to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in the Democratic primary said Monday that Cuomo’s running mate voted in Congress to embarrass President Barack Obama, dismantle part of Obamacare, and sided with Republicans.
Cuomo’s challenger for governor, Zephyr Teachout, and her running mate, Tim Wu, targeted former Rep. Kathy Hochul in a conference call with reporters Monday. Teachout and Wu promise a series of such accusations based on Hochul’s voting record when she served a conservative Buffalo-area district in Congress.
Teachout said Cuomo’s choice of Hochul reflects his own conservative leanings. She criticized him for aligning with Senate Republicans for many of fiscally conservative measures in his first term.
“If Andrew Cuomo was born in another state or born to another father, we’d call him a Republican,” said Teachout, referring to former Gov. Mario Cuomo, a liberal icon of his time. “The choice of a running mate is also an expression of values.”
Cuomo’s campaign declined to comment.
Wu said Hochul hasn’t repudiated any of her positions or votes in Congress while representing the conservative district.
“Instead of standing her ground, she chose politics over principle,” he said. “She doubled down on her old positions.”
Teachout and Wu said they will present a series of press events questioning Hochul’s voting record because Cuomo and Hochul refuse to participate in a debate where Hochul's record could be discussed. The primary is Sept. 9.
Cuomo has a huge lead over Teachout and polls show nine in 10 New Yorkers don’t known enough about the Fordham law professor to have an opinion of her.
Wu is law professor at Columbia University.
Cuomo’s campaign distributed a statement by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) who called Hochul “the progressive choice.” Pelosi has endorsed Hochul.