Kathy Hochul became the first female governor of New York at the stroke of midnight Tuesday, taking control of a state government desperate to get back to business after months of distractions over sexual harassment allegations against Andrew Cuomo.
The ABC 7 reports that the Democrat from western New York was sworn in as governor in a brief, private ceremony in the New York State Capitol overseen by the state’s chief judge, Janet DiFiore.
The new governor tweeted immediately after:
Honored to be officially sworn in as New York’s 57th Governor.
Looking forward to the full swearing-in ceremony with my family later this morning, and addressing the people of New York later today.
— Kathy Hochul (@GovKathyHochul) August 24, 2021
Hochul’s ascent to the top job was a history-making moment in a capital where women have only recently begun chipping away at a notoriously male-dominated political culture.
New York Attorney General Letitia James congratulated Hochul via Twitter just moments after the swear-in ceremony.
Today is a historic day for New Yorkers with the swearing in of our first female governor, @KathyHochul.
I congratulate Governor Hochul on this incredible accomplishment and wish her well in her new role building on the progress of our great state.
— NY AG James (@NewYorkStateAG) August 24, 2021
Cuomo left office at 12:00 a.m, two weeks after he announced he would resign rather than face a likely impeachment battle. He submitted his resignation letter late Monday to the leaders of the state Assembly and Senate.
In the letter addressed to Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Speaker of the New York State Assembly Carl Heastie, Cuomo wrote:
I hereby tender my resignation for the office of Governor of the State of New York. This resignation will be effective at 12:00 a.m., August 24, 2021. It has been my pleasure to serve with you both.