Along with the easy passage of a $2 billion education technology initiative, Governor Andrew Cuomo has become the first Democratic governor in New York to win reelection since his father, Mario Cuomo, in the 1980’s.
“We are going to take this state even higher,” an ebullient Cuomo said in his victory speech. “You ain’t seen nothing yet.”
Cuomo was projected to be the winner over Republican Rob Astorino right as the polls closed at 9pm. As of early this morning, Cuomo held 53.9% of the vote, Astorino 40.6% and 5% for Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins.
When Cuomo won his first term, he had 63% of the vote. He had hoped to come with 64% this term, as his father had done in 1986.
“We said that we would not be pushed or pulled by the extreme forces on the left or the right, that we will always remember the guiding star is service to the people,” Cuomo said while flanked by his daughters and celebrity chef girlfriend Sandra Lee at the Sheraton Hotel in midtown. “We were true to those principles.”
Although he has not made many of his second-term goals clear, Cuomo used his final campaign days to push his views on gender-equality and minority rights, taking to bus tours and rallies to promote his goals of raising the minimum wage and passing a measure that would offer state aid for college tuition to illegal immigrants.
In addition, Cuomo plans to instate a system for publicly financing elections, encourages foreign trade, and will oversee one of the largest projects in the country: the replacement of the Tappan Zee bridge.
Rob Astorino was not shocked by the result, but still urged the governor to clean up Albany and get rid of the Common Core standards once and for all.
“I called Governor Cuomo tonight and I wished him success in the next four years,” the Westchester county executive said, standing with his running mate Chris Moss and their respective families. “Today was a day for politics, tomorrow is a day for governing.”
Cuomo’s Smart School Bond Act also passed with 62% of the vote. The $2 billion act will require schools to create a spending plan in order to receive a portion of the borrowed funds to be spent on technology or to improve upon pre-Kindergarten programs.
Meanwhile, the Stop Common Core line on the ballot is close to receiving the 50,000 votes it needs to maintain a permanent spot on New York ballots for the next four years. As of election night, the ballot line had 45,128 votes, yet may be pushed over the threshold after absentee ballots are counted.