OSWEGO, NY – Andrew Cuomo visited Oswego Thursday afternoon with a comfortable lead in the NYS gubernatorial race. However, he’s not ready to declare victory just yet. The voters have to go to the polls, he said.
“It’s all about you,” the candidate told a standing-room-only crowd of local, county and state officials and other supporters packed into the banquet room at Bridie Manor.
Cuomo says he wants to get to a place where we stop talking about yesterday and the good old days – and start talking about the future and the reasons to stay (in New York) rather than the reasons to leave.
Oswego Mayor Randy Bateman described Cuomo as “someone who knows who we are and what we need to make our state government move forward and make it work for all of us.”
He urged everyone to make sure they get to the polls and vote on Tuesday.
Bob Duffy, lieutenant governor candidate (and Rochester Mayor), said “We can’t afford to have someone other than Andrew Cuomo as our next governor.”
He also encouraged people to get out and vote.
If voters go to the polls and elect Cuomo, “The state will be moving as fast as that beautiful river outside,” Duffy said, referring to the Oswego River rushing past the restaurant.
“Many of these problems in Upstate New York we have been battling year after year. How long have we been talking about jobs leaving New York State? How long have we been talking about young people leaving New York State because they don’t think there is a future here? How long have we been talking about property taxes going up and up and up?” Cuomo said.
The state government has to get its act together and work for the people of the state, he added.
“That’s what this election is all about,” Cuomo said. “You’re going to have a state government of confidence … a state government that you can be proud of where you don’t have to open up a newspaper and worry about another scandal in Albany.”
“You know what I hear all across this state that is a heartbreaker? People will come up and they say, ‘We just don’t trust the state government anymore.’ That word is everything. People just don’t trust the state government. And, it’s not like I can look at them and say, ‘You are wrong.’ They happen to be right!” Cuomo continued. “The state government betrayed their trust.”
Job one will be restoring the trust, so people believe in the government once again, so businesses believe in the government again, he said.
It won’t be done overnight, he admitted.
“It’s going to take months of action where it is about deeds and not words, and it’s about results,” Cuomo explained. “We’re going to bring confidence. We’re going to bring integrity and we’re goring to bring performance. You’re going to see a legislature that is actually going to perform and is going to be cleaned up!”
He received a loud ovation when he announced he would have zero tolerance for waste, fraud or ethics violations.
“You break the law, you break the law. I don’t care if you’re a Democrat or Republican, I don’t care if you’re short or if you’re tall. (As Attorney General) from the sitting governor at the time, we called it straight … I’m going to keep doing that as governor of New York State,” he said.
“And then we’re going to get our state’s fiscal house in order. We’re going to close the budget gap, we’re going to close the deficit – and we’re going to do it without raising taxes,” he vowed. “Raising taxes is the worst thing that we can do right now.”
If you’re the highest taxed state in the nation, businesses are going to look elsewhere, he said, adding there is no reason why New York is taxed so much.
“It’s only because the government in Albany didn’t want to do what every family did, what every business did in this state which is when the economy turns you have to tighten your belt and do more with less,” he said.
There is a universal economic equation – you can only spend what you make, he said. When the income drops, expenses drop, he added.
“There are only two groups of people that are immune from this universal economic equation. One are my three daughters. The second are the politicians in Albany. And, by the way, I’m making more progress with my daughters than with the politicians,” he said to another loud ovation. “You can’t tax your way out of it. You can’t say to the families of New York, ‘I want more taxes!’”
Property taxes are worse than state taxes, he continued. It used to be could you afford your mortgage – now it is can you afford your property taxes, he pointed out.
“I actually believe it takes a crisis to bring about change. We have a crisis, we really have a crisis! And Bob and I are going to use that crisis to bring about change in the state,” Cuomo vowed. “That’s our plan in general. But, before we get to January, we have one little detail we have to address, which is next Tuesday. We are taking nothing for granted. I feel good about the campaign, about the way it’s going; especially over the past few weeks because the positions have clarified.”
“The more our opponent speaks, frankly, the better we do,” Cuomo said. “The more they talk, the more clear it is that their views don’t represent the people of the state of New York.”
It all comes down to Tuesday, Cuomo told the crowd, and added “Tuesday comes down to you. You know who’s going to start change? The person in the mirror is going to start change; it starts with you.”