Riding a surprising wave of momentum, Democratic candidate for governor Zephyr Teachout embarked on a statewide campaign swing Wednesday and continued to hammer her opponent, Governor Andrew Cuomo, who is maintaining a low profile on the campaign trail. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
Amid the canyons of Midtown, Zephyr Teachout was holding court Wednesday, highlighting a controversial tax break afforded to Extell Development for its One57 luxury condo tower, a contrast, she said, to the high housing costs facing many New Yorkers.
"The reason they are too high is because subsidies in this state are going to Extell and One57, not to most New Yorkers," she said.
It was the start of a three-day, 18-stop tour for Teachout and her running mate, lieutenant governor candidate Tim Wu, who seem to be gaining momentum and media attention.
Teachout said she was thrilled with the New York Times editorial page's non-endorsement in the race, which was also critical of Cuomo.
"The New York Times came as close to an endorsement as it possibly could without an actual endorsement," she said.
Cuomo, who had no public appearances Wednesday, has generally done little campaigning, leaving that to his running mate, former Rep. Kathy Hochul.
On Wednesday, she appeared alongside the current lieutenant governor, Robert Duffy, who defended the governor's record and downplayed the Times editorial.
"Endorsements, they're for campaigns. I think the people around this state who've seen a tangible effort of what this governor's done the last four years would agree with me that he's done a great job," Duffy said.
Meanwhile, Cuomo campaign mailers have begun landing in voters' mailboxes, courtesy of the state Democratic Party. As for NY1's invitation to debate Teachout, Cuomo has said the decision is up to his campaign.
"Andrew Cuomo, who said in the Moreland Commission, 'I am the commission,' somehow isn't his campaign. Somehow, he can't decide anything about the debate," Wu said. "You know, it is a mockery of the democratic process."
NY1 has given the two sides until Thursday to say whether they'll participate in the debate, which is scheduled for next Tuesday, and is still awaiting an answer from the Cuomo campaign.