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2010 New York gubernatorial election

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

2010 New York gubernatorial election
Flag of New York (1901-2020).svg

← 2006 November 2, 2010 2014 →
Turnout35.5%[1] Increase0.6pp
Andrew Cuomo by Pat Arnow cropped.jpeg
Paladino Gubernatorial 2010 (cropped).jpg
Nominee Andrew Cuomo Carl Paladino
Party Democratic Republican
Running mate Robert Duffy Greg Edwards
Popular vote 2,910,876 1,547,857
Percentage 63.0% 33.5%

New York Governor Election Results by County, 2010.svg
County results
Cuomo:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%      70–80%      80–90%
Paladino:      40–50%      50–60%      60–70%

Governor before election

David Paterson

Elected Governor

Andrew Cuomo

The New York gubernatorial election of 2010 was held on Tuesday, November 2, 2010. Incumbent Democratic Governor David Paterson, elected as Lieutenant Governor in 2006 as the running mate of Eliot Spitzer, chose not to run for a full term. Democratic New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo defeated Republican Carl Paladino to become the next Governor of New York.

Democratic primary



Failed to qualify
  • Joel Tyner, Dutchess County legislator[4]

Incumbent Democratic Governor David Paterson had announced that he was running for election in 2010.[5] Paterson had been elected lieutenant governor of New York in 2006,[6] and was sworn in as governor in March 2008 following the resignation of Gov. Eliot Spitzer.[7] On September 18, 2009, advisors to President Barack Obama informed Paterson that the President believed Paterson should withdraw his gubernatorial candidacy and clear a path for "popular Attorney General Andrew Cuomo" to run.[8] Paterson insisted he was still running,[9] and reiterated his position on February 9, 2010.[10] On February 26, 2010, however, Paterson withdrew his bid for a full term as governor of New York "amid crumbling support from his party and an uproar over his administration’s intervention in a domestic violence case involving a close aide".[11]

Democratic New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo was widely rumored to be considering a 2010 gubernatorial bid. Though he had originally denied any interest,[12] this did not stop rampant speculation that Cuomo would change his mind and enter the race.[13][14] By December, Cuomo had a massive lead over Paterson in the polls, had higher approval and favorability ratings, and decisively beat any Republican challenger in every poll.[15][16] After over a year of dodging speculation, Cuomo finally announced his candidacy on May 22, 2010 outside the Tweed Courthouse at New York's City Hall.[17] In anticipation of this announcement, Cuomo had released a video laying out his platform and his plan for revitalizing the state of New York. Cuomo made this announcement only a few days before the state party convention, which was the deadline for major party candidates to announce their intentions. On May 26, 2010, he announced his choice for Lieutenant Governor, Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy, a former RPD police chief.

Dutchess County legislator Joel Tyner ran an unsuccessful petition drive that fell short of the 15,000 signatures necessary to get onto the primary ballot.[4]

Rent Is Too Damn High Party founder Jimmy McMillan filed petitions to appear on the Democratic primary ballot and the Rent Is Too Damn High line. However, he put very little effort into the Democratic petitions, and the vast majority of the 13,350 signatures bearing his name were collected by Randy Credico, who had partnered with McMillan for a joint Democratic petition.[18] Credico had counted on McMillan to collect 10,000 signatures to put his total at over 20,000, above the 15,000 required to get onto the ballot, but McMillan never followed through, leaving both candidates short of the necessary signatures to force a Democratic primary against Cuomo, who was thus unopposed. Credico, in response, called McMillan a "jack-off" and a "sorry ass", accusing him of "working against me", "turn[ing] in a wagonload of blank pages and then [leaving] Albany in brand new automobiles."[19] McMillan did file the necessary signatures to get onto the "Rent Is 2 Damn High" line; the petitions were technically invalid because they did not include a lieutenant governor candidate, but McMillan was allowed onto the ballot anyway because nobody challenged the petitions.[citation needed]


Poll source Dates administered David Paterson Andrew Cuomo
Siena Poll January 10–14, 2010 21% 59%
Quinnipiac December 7–13, 2009 23% 60%
Rasmussen Reports July 14, 2009 27% 61%
Qunnipiac May 5–11, 2009 17% 62%
Qunnipiac April 1–5, 2009 18% 61%
Siena Poll March 13–16, 2009 17% 67%
Marist Poll February 25–26, 2009 26% 62%
Siena Poll February 16–18, 2009 27% 53%
Quinnipiac February 10–15, 2009 23% 55%
Siena Poll[permanent dead link] January 20–23, 2009 35% 33%
Siena Poll December 8–11, 2008 49% 26%
Siena Poll November 10–13, 2008 53% 25%
Siena Poll July 7–10, 2008 51% 21%
Siena Poll May 12–15, 2008 42% 29%
Siena Poll April 12–15, 2008 35% 30%


Cuomo was unopposed for the Democratic nomination.

Lieutenant Governor

Unelected Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch did not seek election in 2010.

Cuomo selected Rochester mayor Bob Duffy as his running mate on May 26, 2010.[20] Other Democrats mentioned as potential candidates include Ramapo town supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence,[21][22] State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers),[23] Buffalo mayor Byron Brown,[24] State Senator Darrel Aubertine,[25] and Canandaigua businessman Bill Samuels.[26][27]

Republican primary



Lost nomination

On September 21, 2009, former Long Island Congressman and 2000 Republican U.S. Senate nominee Rick Lazio declared his 2010 candidacy for governor of New York; Lazio made a formal announcement in Albany, New York the following day.[33] Lazio was the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.[34][35][36]

Other potential 2010 Republican gubernatorial candidates included former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Erie County Executive Chris Collins.[37][38][39] In April 2009, a Quinnipiac poll showed Giuliani slightly ahead of incumbent David Paterson.[40][41] Giuliani stated in June 2009 that he was considering running.[42] In December 2009, Giuliani announced that he would not run and would instead back Lazio.[43] On January 26, 2010, Collins announced that he would not run; he did not endorse Lazio, and instead encouraged the Party to choose someone else.[44]

On March 19, 2010, Steve Levy, the county executive of Suffolk County, announced that he would run for Governor as a Republican. Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox threw his support to Levy.[45]

After Collins passed on the race, activist Rus Thompson persuaded developer Carl Paladino to consider running for Governor. In March 2010, Paladino was strongly considering a run and was said to be willing to spend $10,000,000 of his own money on a campaign. He advised state Republican Party chairman Edward F. Cox of his intentions.[46] Paladino announced his candidacy on April 5, 2010.[47]

At the June 2010 Republican Convention, Lazio won the support of 59% of the delegates and was designated the Party's candidate for Governor. Levy "received 28 percent [of the vote] on the first ballot, squeaking above the 25 percent threshold needed to force a second vote on his authorization. While he [had] signed a Republican registration form, Levy [remained] an enrolled Democrat. As such, a separate vote authorizing his appearance in a primary was held: Levy garnered the support of 42.66 percent of the delegates, short of the 50 percent required". Paladino received eight percent of the vote, and real estate consultant Myers Mermel received four percent.[48] On July 15, 2010, Paladino mounted a primary challenge against Lazio by filing petitions.[49] He filed enough petitions to be placed on the ballot for the Republican primary.[50]

By September 2010, Lazio and Paladino were nearly tied in the most polls, with Paladino having a significant edge in Upstate New York and Lazio leading heavily in Downstate New York. Paladino was supported heavily by the Tea Party movement.[51] On September 14, 2010, Paladino upset Lazio by a nearly two-to-one margin in the primary.[52]


Poll source Dates administered Rick Lazio Steve Levy Carl Paladino
Siena Poll September 7–9, 2010 42% 41%
Quinnipiac July 20–26, 2010 39% 23%
Siena Poll May 17–20, 2010 29% 14% 16%
Marist Poll May 3–5, 2010 38% 22% 13%
Siena Poll April 12–15, 2010 29% 15% 13%
Quinnipiac April 6–11, 2010 34% 11% 11%
Marist Poll March 23–24, 2010 53% 21%
Siena Poll March 15–18, 2010 60% 19%


County results of the Republican Primary. Purple are those won by Paladino, Blue are those won by Lazio.
County results of the Republican Primary. Purple are those won by Paladino, Blue are those won by Lazio.
Republican primary results[53]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Carl Paladino 295,336 61.57
Republican Rick Lazio 184,348 38.43
Total votes 479,684 100.00

Lieutenant Governor

On the Republican side, Lazio endorsed Chautauqua County executive Greg Edwards as his choice for lieutenant governor on May 17, 2010.[54] Tom Ognibene, former minority leader of the New York City Council, was Paladino's running mate.[55][56] Other Republicans mentioned as potential candidates included Orange County executive Edward A. Diana,[57] Monroe County executive Maggie Brooks, former New York Secretary of State Christopher Jacobs (Steve Levy's preferred running mate,[58] Onondaga County executive Joanie Mahoney,[54] 2006 lieutenant governor candidate C. Scott Vanderhoef (who instead ran for State Senate), and Myers Mermel (who later opted to run for overnor instead.[32] Edwards narrowly defeated Tom Ognibene, creating a split ticket in which Lazio's preferred running mate became Paladino's running mate in the general election.[59]

County results of the Lieutenant Governor Republican Primary. Purple are those won by Ognibene, Green are those won by Edwards.
County results of the Lieutenant Governor Republican Primary. Purple are those won by Ognibene, Green are those won by Edwards.
Lieutenant Governor Republican primary results[60]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Gregory Edwards 227,093 52.91
Republican Thomas Ognibene 202,081 47.09
Total votes 429,174 100.00

Independents and third parties

Conservative Party

Lazio received the endorsement of the Conservative Party's executive committee in March 2010, with 14 party chairs in favor, four backing Steve Levy,[61] and one (Erie County's Ralph Lorigo) backing Carl Paladino.[62][63] At the Conservative Party convention in May 2010, Ralph Lorigo united with Steve Levy supporters to act as a placeholder on the ballot and earned 42% of the weighted ballot; by being a registered party member, he only needed 25% to force a primary election (something that Levy and Paladino, as a Democrat and Republican respectively, could not do).[citation needed] After Lorigo entered the gubernatorial race, Long demanded Lorigo's resignation;[64] Lorigo responded by offering to wager the party chairmanship on the results of the race: If Lorigo won the primary, Long would resign and allow Lorigo (party second-in-command) to succeed him as Conservative Party chairman, but if Lazio won, Lorigo would resign his position within the Party.[65]

On September 14, 2010, Lazio defeated Lorigo in the Conservative primary.[66] Following Lazio's loss to Paladino in the GOP gubernatorial primary, Chairman Long indicated that he planned to move forward with Lazio; however, on September 27, 2010, Lazio confirmed that he would drop his bid for Governor by accepting a nomination for a judicial position in the Bronx.[67] The Conservative Party then nominated Paladino as its candidate for Governor.[68]


County results of the Conservative Primary. Blue are those won by Lazio, Orange are those won by Lorigo.
County results of the Conservative Primary. Blue are those won by Lazio, Orange are those won by Lorigo.
Conservative primary results[60]
Party Candidate Votes %
Conservative Rick Lazio 11,465 60.18
Conservative Ralph Lorigo 7,586 39.82
Total votes 19,051 100.00
  • Rick Lazio, Republican nominee, won the primary but withdrew.
  • Ralph Lorigo, chairman of the Erie County Conservative Party.

Independence Party

The Independence Party of New York publicly endorsed presumptive Democratic nominee Andrew Cuomo prior to the party convention.[70]


Working Families Party

The Working Families Party was said to heavily favor Cuomo, but was reportedly concerned that the party's damaged reputation may cause Cuomo to decline any nomination from them. In somewhat of a surprise move, the party nominated its own members for all but one statewide elected office, and did not cross-endorse Democrats as usual. The party nominated United Auto Workers lawyer Kenneth Schaffer as its nominee for governor in June 2010.[71] After the federal investigation against the party was closed with no charges, speculation has run rampant that the party will vacate the line in favor of Cuomo by nominating Schaeffer for a judicial position and offering Cuomo a Wilson Pakula, which the party did unanimously in September 2010.[72]

  • Andrew Cuomo

Libertarian Party

The Libertarian Party of New York chose Warren Redlich as its nominee at the state party convention on April 24, 2010.[73]

Lost nomination

Green Party

The Green Party of New York nominated national party co-founder Howie Hawkins, who had been a perennial candidate in state and federal elections since 2006, as its candidate at the party convention on May 15, 2010.[77]


Rent Is Too Damn High Party

Jimmy McMillan, "Rent is Too Damn High"
Jimmy McMillan, "Rent is Too Damn High"

The Rent Is Too Damn High Party, whose perennial New York City mayoral candidate is Jimmy McMillan, fielded him in the New York gubernatorial election in 2010.[78]

Campaign signatures

The Paladino campaign submitted 30,000 signatures for its Taxpayers Party. Charles Barron submitted 43,500 signatures for the Freedom Party, though a fellow New York City councilman, Lewis Fidler, has already announced his intention to challenge Barron's signatures.[79] The Davis campaign submitted 22,000 signatures, the Hawkins campaign filed 27,000, and the Libertarian Party claimed to have submitted over 34,000.[80]


General election

Poll source Dates administered Sample size Margin of error Andrew Cuomo (D) Carl Paladino (R) Other Undecided
Angus Reid Public Opinion October 28–29, 2010 546 LV ±4.2% 55% 38% 5% ––
Rasmussen October 22, 2010 943 RV ±3.0% 51% 37% 2% 12%
The New York Times October 17–19, 2010 943 RV ±3.0% 67% 24% 2% 12%
The New York Times October 10–15, 2010 943 RV ±3.0% 59% 24% 2% 12%
Survey USA / Gannett October 11–13, 2010 633 LV ±3.9% 59% 33% 6% 3%
Survey USA / Gannett October 5–7, 2010 627 LV ±4.0% 57% 34% 5% 3%
Angus Reid Public Opinion October 5–7, 2010 500 RV ±4.5% 63% 32% 6% ––
Quinnipiac October 1–5, 2010 1,141 LV ±2.9% 55% 37% 2% 6%
CNN / Opinion Research October 1–5, 2010 585 LV ±4.0% 55% 41% 2% 1%
CNN / Opinion Research October 1–5, 2010 1,315 RV ±2.5% 65% 31% 2% 1%
Siena Poll October 3–4, 2010 636 LV ±3.9% 56% 32% –– 11%
Public Policy Polling October 1–3, 2010 592 LV ±4.0% 53% 38% –– 8%
Marist Poll September 27–29, 2010 591 LV ±4.0% 53% 38% 1% 8%
Survey USA/Gannett September 20–21, 2010 572 LV ±4.2% 49% 40% 8% 3%
Quinnipiac September 16–20, 2010 751 LV ±3.6% 49% 43% 1% 7%
Rasmussen Reports September 20, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 54% 38% 2% 6%
Quinnipiac August 23–29, 2010 1,497 RV ±2.5% 60% 23% 1% 14%
Siena Poll August 9–16, 2010 788 RV ±3.5% 60% 27% –– 13%
Quinnipiac July 20–26, 2010 1,165 RV ±2.9% 55% 25% 1% 16%
Rasmussen Reports July 20, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 58% 29% 5% 8%
Rasmussen Reports June 24, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 55% 25% 6% 13%
Siena Poll May 17–20, 2010 905 RV ±3.3% 65% 22% –– 13%
Marist Poll May 3–5, 2010 686 RV ±4.0% 67% 22% –– 11%
Rasmussen Reports April 27, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 55% 25% 5% 15%
Quinnipiac April 6–11, 2010 1,381 RV ±2.6% 60% 24% 1% 14%
Rasmussen Reports March 29, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 51% 28% 6% 15%
Rasmussen Reports March 1, 2010 500 LV ±4.5% 56% 27% 6% 11%


Cuomo defeated Paladino in a landslide.[81]

Election results by county
Election results by county
Gubernatorial election in New York, 2010 [82]
Party Candidate Running mate Votes Percentage Swing
Democratic Andrew Cuomo 2,609,465 56.52% Decrease 1.82%
Working Families Andrew Cuomo 154,835 3.35% Increase 0.05%
Independence Andrew Cuomo 146,576 3.17% Decrease 0.89%
Total Andrew Cuomo Robert Duffy 2,910,876 63.05% Decrease 2.65%
Republican Carl Paladino 1,289,817 27.94% Increase 4.40%
Conservative Carl Paladino 232,215 5.03% Increase 1.44%
Taxpayers Carl Paladino 25,825 0.56%
Total Carl Paladino Greg Edwards 1,547,857 33.53% Increase 6.41%
Green Howie Hawkins Gloria Mattera 59,906 1.30% Increase 0.41%
Libertarian Warren Redlich Alden Link 48,359 1.05% Increase 0.74%
Rent Is Too Damn High Jimmy McMillan James D. Schultz 41,129 0.89% Increase 0.61%
Freedom Charles Barron Eva M. Doyle 24,571 0.53%
Anti-Prohibition Kristin M. Davis Tanya Gendelman 20,421 0.44%
Scattering 4,836 0.10% N/A
Majority 1,363,019 29.52% Decrease 9.06%
Totals 4,769,741 100.00%
Democratic Hold

The results of New York's gubernatorial elections are used to decide which parties receive automatic ballot access and what order the parties are listed on the ballot. Parties whose candidates for governor receive over 50,000 votes on that party's line receive automatic ballot access for the next four years until the next gubernatorial election. This rule applies regardless of whether the party fielded its own candidate or cross-endorsed the candidate of another party. Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins received over 57,000 votes, allowing the New York Green Party to be listed on the ballot for the following four years.[83][84]


  1. ^ David Paterson with 5%, Rudy Giuliani with 5%, and Steve Levy with 3%


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External links

Official campaign websites (Archived)
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