Kathy Hochul Quietly Prepares to Replace Cuomo as Governor
For now, Ms. Hochul (pronounced HOH-kuhl) is keeping a low profile. She canceled her public events last week, following the release of the state attorney general’s report, and declined to be interviewed for this article.
But behind the scenes, Ms Hochul, a Democrat, braced herself for what may well be the inevitable, consulting her circle of longtime advisers and familiarizing herself with the details of the transition process, if Mr Cuomo resigned or was dismissed. , according to an administration official. (If Mr. Cuomo is impeached by the State Assembly, he must hand over the reins of government to Ms. Hochul while he is tried in the State Senate.)
Ms Hochul has responded to numerous calls from advocacy groups wanting to brief her on their main issues and from government leaders seeking to establish or expand their relationships with her.
A few weeks ago, Liz Krueger, a senator from Manhattan, and Ms. Hochul met at Pershing Square, a restaurant across from Grand Central Terminal. As they shared an avocado salad, Ms Krueger asked Ms Hochul what she thought about the possibility of Mr Cuomo resigning.
“She assured me that she was ready to take over if that was what was asked of her,” Ms. Krueger said.
Preparation has been the hallmark of more than a quarter of a century Ms. Hochul has spent in local, state and federal government, beginning with a 14-year stint on city council in Hamburg, western New York. .
She grew up outside of Buffalo, in a Catholic family facing economic hardship. She graduated from Syracuse University, received a law degree from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC, and entered private practice. Ms Hochul quickly turned to the government, serving as an assistant to Mr LaFalce and US Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan.
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