Eighteen days from the 2018 election, it remains unclear whether Gov. Andrew Cuomo will agree to debate Republican nominee Marcus Molinaro, the Dutchess County executive. Or Larry Sharpe, the Libertarian candidate. Or Green Party nominee Howie Hawkins.
To debate or not to debate is Cuomo’s prerogative. State politics doesn’t fall under New York City’s campaign finance system, which mandates debate participation for most candidates for citywide office. And there’s no state version of the Commission on Presidential Debates, which has no legal authority but has wielded enough prestige and establishment connections to ensure debates in the last eight presidential elections.
But Cuomo’s declining (so far) to debate doesn’t mean New Yorkers don’t have questions for him and other candidates.
So City Limits has started surveying readers about the questions they’d ask if they were moderating a gubernatorial debate. Below are the top submissions so far.
We’ll keep collecting them, and do what we can to report answers to them. You can add yours by communicating with us here or texting “ask” to 646-916-3930.
Dear (insert candidate name):
1). Climate change will greatly affect the health and finances of New Yorkers. The Federal Government is not responding to this threat. What are the top three new initiatives you implement to address Climate change?
2). The city wants to grow my neighborhood, Inwood, at a pace most residents feel is way too fast. But the state controls the subway. If the Inwood rezoning proceeds, do you have a realistic plan to upgrade our overloaded A and 1 trains to carry the extra traffic?
3). What would you do with the proceeds of legalizing and taxing marijuana sales?
4). What is your plan to stop the affordable housing crisis?
5). What will the governor do to address all the MTA and traffic and infrastructure problems facing the city?