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Should Biden be campaigning in N.Y.? Hochul says ‘he is welcome here any day’



Should Biden be campaigning in N.Y.? Hochul says ‘he is welcome here any day’

When it comes to presidential politics, New York doesn’t get much attention.

Other than being a common state of residence for presidents at the time of their election (the most recent being Donald Trump in 2016 before he changed residency to Florida), the state and its large number of electoral votes has been a Democratic stronghold for two generations. Ronald Reagan was the last Republican nominee to carry the state in 1984, and the state is expected to continue its long Democratic streak in 2024.

That said, President Joe Biden has seen sagging favorability numbers in the state in recent months, according to polls, and while he still leads Trump in the expected rematch this fall, it is by a considerably lower margin than what has been normal for a Democrat.

A June Siena College poll found Biden has an underwater 42-53% favorability rating among New York voters, his lowest ever. His job approval rating in the same poll came in at 45-53%, which is down from the previous month. Currently, Biden leads Trump by 8 points in New York, which is little changed from polls earlier this spring. In 2020, Biden defeated Trump by 23 points in the state.

Coupled with Biden’s recent debate performance and national Democrats’ mulling on Biden’s future, it might beg the question: Should Biden be campaigning in New York?

Spectrum News 1 posed this question to Gov. Kathy Hochul during a phone interview Wednesday. Hochul herself won a close contest by New York standards in the race for governor two years ago.

“The day after the president’s debate, on Friday, he was in New York. He was in New York City. I was with him,” Hochul said. “He was very engaged with the crowd as we opened the National Stonewall Visitor Center to commemorate the birthplace of the LGBTQ movement. So he was there. He was engaging with residents there. So I don’t know if that’s considered campaigning or not, but he was in New York that day and the next day as well so, he is welcome here any day.”

Hochul was one of 20-plus Democratic governors who met with Biden in Washington last week and said she and the others there pledged their support to him.

“He has been involved. I anticipate he will come back,” Hochul said Wednesday. “The first lady has been here many,many times. The vice president continues to come to New York. So I don’t think they’ll be strangers here.”

Hochul implied Biden is also present, when not in person, on the legislative front.

“We spoke about President Biden when we announced just a couple days ago the largest federal infrastructure project in American history going on right in New York and New Jersey with the Gateway Tunnel,” Hochul said.

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