New York Primary results: Letitia James wins Democrat race for attorney general after Andrew Cuomo takes governor race against Cynthia Nixon


Andrew Cuomo has won the Democrat primary for New York governor, defeating challenger Cynthia Nixon after a highly anticipated election.

Mr Cuomo’s win has not come as a surprise, with far greater financial resources going into the race, and polls suggesting he held a strong lead before voting began.

His challenger, Ms Nixon, an activist and star of Sex and the City, had hoped to become the latest liberal challenger to unseat a powerful insider in Albany’s Democratic establishment. The night did award some progressive candidates, however, including a State Senate seat for first-time Latina candidate, 27-year-old Julia Salazar, as well as Letitia James, New York’s public advocate, who will now serve as the state attorney general.

Mr Cuomo’s campaign dismissed Ms Nixon as inexperienced and touted the governor’s work to push back against President Donald Trump.

His victory comes despite several missteps, including a widely condemned mailer that questioned Ms Nixon’s support for Jewish people. She has two Jewish children and called the attack “sleazy.”

Mr Cuomo will face Republican Marc Molinaro and independent Stephanie Miner in November’s general election.

Ms Nixon endorsed several progressive candidates vying for positions in Thursday’s election, including Zephyr Teachout, who ran against Ms James for state attorney general, as well as Jumaane Williams, who ran for lieutenant governor. 

The Democratic Party’s primaries took most of the state’s media focus for the day, with just one Republican vying for the governor’s seat. Marc Molinaro, a Dutchess County executive and former member of the New York State Assembly, has also criticised the two-term Democratic incumbent over his handling of the city’s subway system and other major issues. 

Follow along with The Independent’s live updates throughout the night, as New Yorkers decide the outcome of the crucial 2018 primaries. 

Live Updates


Hello and welcome to our coverage of the New York primary elections.


Today’s biggest race is between two-term incumbent Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo and Cynthia Nixon, the actress and progressive activist who is a first-time candidate in the state.


We spoke to Cynthia Nixon just before the contentious election, and she said that, whatever happens today, it is not the end of her political career.


Andrew Cuomo has been forced to battle back the wave of progressive newcomers throughout his re-election campaign, maintaining a lead on Cynthia Nixon in the polls despite numerous Democratic candidates attacking his tenure as governor of New York. 

He’s positioned himself as a leader of the Resistance movement among Democrats, vowing to protect the state’s immigrant populations and going head-to-head with the president on several occasions. 


Cynthia Nixon has cast her ballot, writing on Twitter, “Just cast my ballot for a New York that works for all of us.”


Cynthia Nixon and Andrew Cuomo aren’t the only candidates facing contentious elections in the Thursday primaries. 

The state’s race for attorney general is an essential toss-up between Rep. Sean Maloney, New York City public advocate Letitia James and Zephyr Teachout, a law professor endorsed by Bernie Sanders, according to polling data. Leecia Eve, a former Hillary Clinton aide, has trailed the other three candidates. 


The New York Democratic primaries have seen a wave of candidates endorsed by the Democratic Socialists of America, as certain progressives have increasingly welcomed the label of being a Democratic Socialist, including Cynthia Nixon. 

Julia Salazar, a 27-year-old first-time Latina candidate who also considers herself a Democratic Socialist, is vying for a seat in the State Senate in a race against a longtime incumbent, while Jumaane Williams, who has been endorsed by the DSA, is running for state lieutenant governor. 


Meanwhile, Republican candidate Marc Molinaro has been tweeting that he’s within “striking distance” of Andrew Cuomo to become the state’s next governor, citing a New York State Reform Party poll. 

He won’t have to compete in Thursday’s primaries, however, writing on Twitter, “Just a quick reminder that tomorrow is the Democratic Primary for Statewide offices. I do not have a primary opponent and am honored to be the Republican, Conservative, and Reform Parties Candidate for Governor.”



As voters flock to the polls in New York, read about how Cynthia Nixon first became involved in politics — and what she’s fighting for as Andrew Cuomo’s progressive challenger. 


Candidates are making their way to the polls, and encouraging their constituents to do the same.

Tish James, who is running to become the state’s next attorney general, posted photos on Twitter of herself voting and greeting voters Thursday. “Proud to speak truth to power today & exercise my most basic right to vote,” she wrote in a tweet. “To all New Yorkers: I hope you join me today and make your voice and your values heard.”


Jumaane Williams has also spent the day reaching out to voters in a last-minute effort to secure the Democratic nomination for the state’s lieutenant governor. 

He’s repeatedly attacked Andrew Cuomo and his lieutenant governor, who “fail to speak up & speak out when the people’s work isn’t being done,” according to an election day tweet.


The crucial New York primaries have raised awareness over the state’s historically low voter turnout. 

In 2016, only 57 per cent of the state’s registered voters cast ballots in the presidential elections, the New York Times reported. New York sees even lower rates of voter turnout during midterm elections, with just over 34 per cent of registered New York voters participating in the 2014 midterms. 

New York does not have automatic voter registration, same-day voter registration or even early voting, along with numerous other progressive voting options that have raised turnout in a variety of other states. 


Regardless of whether or not Cynthia Nixon defeats Andrew Cuomo, the Working Families Party has already agreed to give her their position on the November ballot — allowing her to continue fighting against the Democratic incumbent governor ahead of the contentious upcoming election. 

The WFP has endorsed a slate of progressives in Thursday’s Democratic primaries, including first-time Latina candidate for State Senate, Julia Salazar. 


Governor Andrew Cuomo has cast his ballot in the New York Democratic primaries, accompanied by his girlfriend, Sandra Lee. The two-term incumbent can be seen shaking hands with polling place volunteers before making his way to a voting booth and casting his ballot. 


New Yorkers are reporting high turnout at their local polling places across the state on Thursday. 

One resident, who posted a tweet showing their ballot, wrote that they were “told by poll site supervisor” that “more people voted by 10am than all of last state election.” 

Others have posted photos of crowds outside of polling sites from the morning rush, with voters wearing merchandise from Cynthia Nixon’s campaign and several other progressive candidates. 


New York’s Democratic primaries feature some of the most diverse candidates in recent history for the state, with historic outcomes expected in state positions regardless of who wins Thursday’s elections. 

The attorney general race outcome could possibly feature the first openly gay statewide official to be elected, one of two women vying to become the first African-American woman to hold the position, and a pregnant woman vying to become the first new mother to assume the role.

Meanwhile, it appears voters came out in droves on Thursday, with lines out the door at many polling sites. 


Reporters are flanked outside of Andrew Cuomo’s home on Thursday as New Yorkers are making their way to the polls. 

Vicki Lins, one of the governor’s neighbours who lives across the street, posted photos on Twitter of news vans and journalists swarming the streets. “Living across the street from @NYGovCuomo means supporters + protestors at the end of our drive and sharing the same polling place,” she wrote.


Several voters in New York have reported arriving to their local polling places to find their names were not listed on the voter rolls. The state’s attorney general office has been tracking systemic problems and troubleshooting individual issues for residents. 

Voters can reach the attorney general’s office by calling 800-771-7755 or emailing their issues to 


Cynthia Nixon has just posted this new video showing the five-floor walkup home she grew up in with her mother while being raised in New York. 

The progressive activist has sought to identify herself as a leader with a modest upbringing who has witnessed a loss of the opportunities she received as a child. 

“My family didn’t have a lot of money, but I had opportunities that I don’t see for the vast majority of kids today,” she wrote in a tweet accompanying the video. “We can change that.”


Bernie Sanders has spent the afternoon retweeting posts from Jumaane Williams, a progressive candidate running to become the state’s next lieutenant governor. The tweets include campaign videos outlining Mr Williams’ platform, as well as calls for voters to head to the polls for Thursday’s crucial midterm primaries. 

As one of the nation’s most popular politicians, Mr Sanders has used his pull to support a breadth of progressive candidates across the country, from Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Andrew Gillum, two candidates from New York and Florida who saw shock electoral upset victories in recent primaries. 

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