Governor Andrew Cuomo expects to serve as Secretary of State in the administration of Joe Biden following private discussions with the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee earlier this week, sources close to the Governor tell The Chronicle.
In that circumstance, Western New York’s own Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul would serve the remaining two years of Cuomo’s gubernatorial term — a prospect that has been exciting the local business community.
Representatives of the Governor have been lobbying Biden for a cabinet position in recent months, and had even discussed the position of Attorney General — a position that Cuomo has already held in New York. Widely known to harbor presidential aspirations, Cuomo pushed hard for a high-level role that would yield him foreign policy experience.
Some in Biden’s inner circle had assumed that Dr. Susan Rice, the National Security Advisor to President Barack Obama who was nearly nominated for Vice President, would end up running the State Department given how publicly she had been passed over for the number two spot on the Party’s ticket — and given her widely known ambitions on the office.
But following discussions with Cuomo, Biden agreed that Dr. Rice would be a more suitable Secretary of Homeland Security or, perhaps even, the first woman to serve as Secretary of Defense.
Political staffers to Governor Cuomo worry that his private conversation with Biden was not recorded and did not include staff. In light of public concerns of Biden’s failing memory, they worry that his commitment could be forgotten after the election.
The prospect of a Hochul administration could mean billions of dollars in public infrastructure investment across Western New York.