On May 3rd, Governor Kathy Hochul announced Rep. Antonio Delgado as her new Lieutenant Governor. In her announcement, Governor Hochul called Delgado the “right person for the job” and praised his time in Congress working to help small businesses, veterans and those struggling with student loan debt.
“I know he’ll fight tooth and nail,” the Governor said. “Just like he’s been doing in Congress, pushing for quality, affordable healthcare. Supporting the small businesses, something that’s deeply personal to both of us. And working hard to bring jobs back to his district. Making sure that our veterans get more than just recognition and a ‘thank you for your service.’ They have to have the resources to continue and have the support they need, whether it’s housing or education or jobs. And he’s working hard already to ensure that every single community comes back from that pandemic. And he was supportive of the rescue plan, his bill had direct support for communities which delivered over $130 billion in aid for local government. He gets it. He knows where the power truly lies. Antonio is someone who’s been in the public arena for all the right reasons. He doesn’t just talk, he gets results.”
Delgado was sworn in as Lieutenant Governor on Wednesday, May 25th. During the ceremony, Delgado said he is “humbled” to be a partner with the Governor and all New Yorkers, and said he is dedicated to listening everyone.
“Whether you’re for me or against me. Whether you agree with me, or you don’t. I’m here to listen to you, to hear you out, to serve you. To make your lives and your family’s lives better,” Delgado said. “I know people are feeling pain. I know it. We have to right this ship and create more equity and access points to opportunity and care.” He continued, saying, “we need leaders who are committed to doing the important work of elevating our collective consciousness so that we may see ourselves in each other, and realize that we are actually all one. People are feeling detached. Detached from their government, from their community, from one another. There is substance abuse and mental health crises. People are feeling more and more isolated, prone to the perils of social media platforms that shred all genuine forms of human interaction. More and more people have less and less access to their own government. As money continues to overwhelm our political system and squeeze the vast majority of Americans out. It’s putting a profound strain on our democracy. We must take this problem head on and we can. It just takes work. And it takes love. Love of democracy, love of country, love of neighbor, and love of New York. New York has long been at the forefront of progress in this country. A woman’s right to vote, right to choose, gay marriage, gun reform, labor movement, environmental movement, all ahead of the national curve. New York has always been a leader in a time of trouble, always a beacon of hope and light in times of peril and darkness. This is who New York is. We love New York because New York loves people. All people. It is the epicenter of multiculturalism, of what it means to be multi-religious and multiethnic, it is the epicenter of tolerance and acceptance. Of progress of our collective effort to perfect our union. In New York, every community counts. We are the Empire State and we will live up to our ideals.”
The new Lieutenant Governor will also be on the ballot for the June 28th Democratic Primary after former Lt. Governor Brian Benjamin removed his name last month. Delgado is likely to face a competitive primary against Diana Reyna, who was chosen by Tom Suozzi to be his “running mate,” and Ana Maria Archila who was chosen by Jumaane Williams. Archila secured several endorsements from powerful Democrats this week, including Deputy Senate Majority Leader Mike Gianaris. “New Yorkers are facing an affordability crisis and need real solutions, including affordable housing, better paying jobs, and quality healthcare,” Gianaris said. “Ana Maria is exactly the independent voice that working families need to make sure that the state government is focused on their needs – not the interests of billionaires and big corporations.”
It is important to remember that candidates running for Lieutenant Governor run in their own primaries, separate from the gubernatorial candidates that may have picked them as their “running mates.” Whichever candidate wins the primary for Lieutenant Governor is then added to the Democratic ticket for Governor when the two offices are elected together in November.