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NY1 has learned that Nixon has begun the process of assembling staff to lay the groundwork for a competitive campaign.

Katz and Hyers used to advise Mayor Bill de Blasio, who is frequently at odds with Cuomo.

Actress Cynthia Nixon is expected to announce that she's running for governor of NY in 2018 as a Democratic candidate!

"Many concerned New Yorkers have been encouraging Cynthia to run for office, and as she has said previously, she will continue to explore it", Nixon's publicist, Rebecca Capellan, has said.

During a conference call with reporters about storm preparations, the governor was asked if he thinks Mayor de Blasio is behind Nixon's possible run for governor.

The actress said in a backstage interview after her performance in the one-woman play, "In the Body of the World", that she'd consider running for governor one day.

"In this business, you can't let these things bother you, " he said.

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Liberal activists who have been critical of Cuomo on education and other issues think an insurgent with greater name recognition could provide a stronger challenge, even though polls say Cuomo is still popular among Democratic voters statewide. In January, she tweeted, "Taking our country back is going to require all of us to step up and take action - including more women, people of color, queer people, and first-generation Americans running for office".

Asked later whether Nixon's name recognition could impact the race, Cuomo compared her with bigger stars.

She went on to knock Cuomo's record on school aid, saying education funding is something "parents all across NY state talk to me about".

De Blasio's office didn't immediately comment.

Ms. Nixon's celebrity would represent a unique challenge for Mr. Cuomo because of her ability to garner media interest.

Former Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner is contemplating a primary challenge to the Democratic governor, while former Hudson Valley Sen.

Cuomo has already announced he will seek a third term in November and is a potential 2020 presidential candidate.


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