Kathy Hochul’s first speech as governor of New York stuck to the tradition for initial inaugurals: blessedly brief, general themes, details (implicitly) to follow.
Hochul’s specific priorities were lowest-common-denominator stuff: “combating” the spread of COVID-19 linked to the Delta variant, pushing billions in stalled federal rent relief out the door to tenants (and ultimately their landlords) and “beginning to change the culture in Albany.”
So far, so familiar: Hochul’s inaugural aspirations — even the bit about showing “no tolerance for individuals who cross the line” on sexual harassment — could have been lifted from any number of speeches given over the last decade by Andrew Cuomo, who (like all of his predecessors) also pledged to be an agent of change. Indeed, Hochul’s vow that “a new era of transparency will be one of the hallmarks of my administration” was a near-echo of Cuomo’s 2010 promise to run “the most transparent administration” in New York’s history.
We’ll see. To begin with, at least, she certainly has less to hide.
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