WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. – In a surprise to no one who has been even peripherally following the often-contentious gubernatorial race, Gov. Andrew Cuomo will retain his seat, topping Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, who has conceded.
With exit polls painting a less than favorable picture for the challenging Republican, Astorino and Lieutenant Governor hopeful Sheriff Chris Moss chose to concede to Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul less than two hours after polls closed at 9 p.m.
"We're going to do more great things," Cuomo said in his victory speech in Manhattan. "We're going to take this state even higher."
Cuomo is the first Democrat to be re-elected as New York governor since his father, Mario Cuomo, who was elected to three terms, ending in 1994, when he was upset by George Pataki.
According to unofficial Board of Elections results, at the time of Astorino's concession, 324 of 949 districts (34 percent) had reported, with 54 percent of voters voting for Cuomo.
Astorino delivered his concession speech shortly after Cuomo spoke.
"Someone once told me you can't lose when you tell the truth, and tonight, I know that's true," Astorino said in his concession speech. "I've called Gov. Cuomo and wished him success in the next four years. Today was a day for politics, tomorrow is a day for governing."
This will be Cuomo's second four-year term in the Governor's office after being elected in 2010 over Republican Carl Paladino.
Cuomo led the gubernatorial race wire-to-wire , and held a near two-to-one lead over Astorino as late as last week, according to a Marist College poll . There are also twice as many registered Democrats as there are Republicans in New York. Therefore, it should come as no shock that the county executive didn't fare well in the voting booth.
"We are too good of a state, and New Yorkers work too hard to be embarrassed by their government year after year," Astorino added.
The two gubernatorial candidates have been at each others’ throats for most of the race, peaking when the two traded jabs at a two-hour debate in Buffalo . The race, and the negative advertising campaigns that have gone with them, hit close to home, with the candidates’ families chiming in over a series of YouTube clips.
Now that he’s been re-elected, Cuomo will be tasked with following through with promises and statements he’s made throughout the campaign, including fracking, creating jobs and limiting taxes and mandates.
Meanwhile, Astorino will head back to White Plains to run Westchester County on a daily basis.
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