NEW YORK—Andrew Cuomo was sworn in as the 56th governor of New York at 10 p.m. on Friday. His governorship became official at midnight.
Democrat Cuomo defeated Republican contender Carl Paladino by a wide margin in the November election, after a bitter race that revealed Cuomo’s sometimes-aggressive nature.
Cuomo was the state Attorney General before winning the governorship. He is replacing Gov. David Patterson, who took office after former Gov. Eliot Spitzer had stepped down following a scandal involving a high-priced call girl.
Cuomo was joined at the ceremony, held at the governor’s mansion in Albany, by his father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo; mother Matilda; three daughters; girlfriend Sandra Lee, a Food Network personality; younger brother Chris, an anchor on the ABC news program “20/20”; three sisters; and other family members.
Cuomo faces an enormous challenge ahead, including a divided state Assembly that has several times ground to a halt due to infighting, as well as a huge state deficit.
“The challenges are daunting,” Cuomo was quoted as saying in The New York Times. “So anyone who underestimates the slope of the hill that this state has to climb, let’s call it a mountain, is just not dealing with reality.”