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Cuomo-Giuliani prepared

Is New York Prepared for a Cuomo-Giuliani Showdown?

On January 2, 1994, seven-year-old Andrew Giuliani stood before all of New York with his right hand raised and proudly took the oath of office. At the time he was merely mimicking the words of his father, Rudy Giuliani, as he was sworn in as New York’s mayor for the first time, but the child…

On January 2, 1994, seven-year-old Andrew Giuliani stood before all of New York with his right hand raised and proudly took the oath of office. At the time he was merely mimicking the words of his father, Rudy Giuliani, as he was sworn in as New York’s mayor for the first time, but the child appeared so committed to the bit that he went on to repeatedly recite a line in his father’s inaugural address––even waving his arms around and pumping his fist to drive points home. “It should be so and it will be so!” Andrew exclaimed before the crowd, as his father hammered on about once again making New York the greatest city in the world. 

The bizarro like-father-like-son scene was immortalized in a classic Chris Farley sketch on Saturday Night Live, but now, nearly three decades later, it seems that the junior Giuliani might have been practicing instead of just acting. On Wednesday, Andrew Giuliani, who most recently served in Donald Trump’s White House as a top aide, announced his “plan to run” for governor of New York in the upcoming 2022 election, telling the Washington Examiner, “I believe I can win the race.”

For Giuliani, winning the Republican primary could result in a general election clash with another New York political-nepotism case. If Governor Andrew Cuomo, the son of the late New York governor Mario Cuomo, does opt to run for a fourth term, then Giuliani believes he can beat the scandal-ridden incumbent. “Outside of anybody named Trump, I think I have the best chance to win and take the state back, and I think there’s an opportunity in 2022 with a wounded Democratic candidate, whether it’s going to be Governor Cuomo, whether it’s going to be a radical [Attorney General] Letitia James, whether it’s going to be a no-name lieutenant governor, I think there’s a very, very real chance to win,” he said. Though Giuliani served in the Trump White House’s Office of Public Liaison, and flirted with running this year for his father’s old job, he has never won an elected position.

Giuliani also asserted that he views himself as the “right candidate, and this is the right time to help change New York State, and we’ve got a playbook that works…. It just shows how terribly Cuomo has run the state into the ground, and the truth is the assembly in State Senate is to blame as well.” Cuomo has not yet confirmed if he’ll run for a fourth term in 2022 and is currently under two separate investigations regarding a series of sexual-misconduct allegations. Cuomo, who has denied any wrongdoing in the face of the allegations, has repeatedly shot down calls for his resignation by top New York Democrats in recent weeks. My colleague Chris Smith recently reported how Cuomo is trying to weather the political storm by flexing his clout in Albany and appealing to Black voters.

Meanwhile, the elder Giuliani is facing legal troubles of his own for claims he made while working as Trump’s personal lawyer. After making unfounded accusations against Dominion Voting Systems to argue that the 2020 election was rigged and tainted with fraudulent votes, the voting-machine company filed a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit against Giuliani, claiming he “manufactured and disseminated the ‘Big Lie,’ which foreseeably went viral and deceived millions of people into believing that Dominion had stolen their votes and fixed the election.” On Wednesday, Giuliani entered a court filing in which he denied defaming Dominion and said that the company’s suit should be dismissed.

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