Reagan Reese on November 8, 2022
Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul has been elected governor of New York, defeating Republican candidate Lee Zeldin, according to multiple election forecasters.
Zeldin’s campaign focus on crime made the race against Hochul competitive, giving New York a chance at its first Republican governor since 2006. However, Hochul won by a substantial margin, according to state voter data.
New York was favored to elect Hochul leading up to the election, according to the Cook Political Report. Zeldin held a lead over Hochul for the first time on Nov. 1, pulling ahead by just 0.8 points in a poll by The Trafalgar Group, though according to the RealClearPolitics polling average, Hochul maintained a lead over Zeldin throughout the election season.
The surge of crime and violence in the state has been a main campaign point for the candidates; in July, a man climbed on stage during a rally in Perinton, New York, and tried to stab Zeldin. The alleged attacker was released from jail just hours after the incident which Zeldin predicted would happen under New York laws.
In October, two individuals were shot outside of Zeldin’s house in Long Island while his two 16-year-old daughters were inside. The individuals were found underneath Zeldin’s porch in the bushes and a bullet was found 30 feet from where Zeldin’s daughters were doing their homework.
A Zeldin supporter was allegedly choked on Saturday while protesting a Hochul event and holding an anti-Hochul sign. Zeldin criticized Hochul for staying silent on the attack.
“I have always condemned political violence of any kind, and Kathy Hochul must do the same,” Zeldin wrote in a tweet. “Her continued silence on her supporter choking out a woman simply exercising her First Amendment rights makes her complicit in this attack.”
Since taking office, Hochul has signed several pieces of legislation including a bill that bans “salesman” and “gendered language” from New York statutes. In June, Hochul signed a series of gun control bills including one that keeps people under 21 years old from buying certain semi-automatic rifles.
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