New York Governor Kathy Hochul will win her first full term in office, defeating Republican House Rep Lee Zeldin. Hochul replaced former Governor Andrew Cuomo after a series of scandals.
Hochul was competing against GOP nominee Rep. Lee Zeldin, R-N.Y., who ran a competitive race against the incumbent Democrat, but did not secure enough votes to oust the Democrat, who led her opponent in public opinion polls for most of the cycle.
Zeldin gained ground mid-October and began nearing his Democratic opponent in support among voters, according to several recent polls.
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New York has seen a surge in crime over the past few months, and the issue became a focal point of the race after a civilian who tried to stab Zeldin while he was speaking at a campaign event was released from police custody without bail. A shooting also unfolded outside of Zeldin’s home, but no arrests were made after the incident.
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With rising crime, particularly in New York City, recent polls showed law and order was one a the top midterm issues to voters this cycle and became a key talking point during Hochul and Zeldin’s only debate of the cycle.
Hochul, who is the first female to hold the seat in New York, served as the state’s lieutenant Governor beside former Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The former governor stepped down from his position in 2021 amid allegations of sexual harassment, and Hochul took over as his replacement.
Zeldin is one of the few Republican congressmen from the state, serving in New York’s 1st Congressional District, but gave up his position to run for governor.
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New York’s gubernatorial terms last four years, and the state has no term limits for governor.