Washington (CNN) – New York Gov. David Paterson vowed Tuesday that he would not allow unfounded rumors to drive him from office and pledged to run for his own four year term in November.
"Let me let you know this: The only way I am not going to be governor next year is at the ballot box and the only way that I will be leaving office before is in a box," Paterson said at news conference he called Tuesday to discuss the winter storm headed for his state.
While the focus of the news conference was supposed to be about the weather, Paterson was peppered with questions about his personal life. The governor has been dogged for weeks by rumors of womanizing and illegal drug use.
"There hasn't been one shred of evidence that any of these charges that were made against me were even true," said a defiant Paterson, who stood behind a podium with the state seal.
(CNN) - New York Gov. David Paterson defended himself Monday from rumors of womanizing and drug use, describing these unfounded reports as "outrageous," during an interview with the Associated Press.
"For the last couple of weeks I have been the subject of what, even by Albany standards, has been a spate of outrageous rumors about me," Paterson told the AP.
Despite rumors of drug use and gallivanting, Paterson told the AP he hasn't used an illegal substance since his early 20's and rarely eats dinner outside of his home. He also said he hasn't had sexual relations with another woman in more than 10 years. Both Paterson and his wife have previously admitted to extramarital affairs in their past.
The embattled Democratic governor, who is serving the remainder of former Gov. Elliot Spitzer's term, also criticized some reports in the media about his life as "callous and sleazy."
Paterson specifically pointed his finger at the New York Post, which reported late last month that a state police officer caught the governor involved with a woman who wasn't his wife. Paterson said the room he was supposedly caught in doesn't even exist. The Post stood by its reporting in a statement to CNN.
Paterson also blamed the spate of rumors on an investigation that The New York Times is reportedly working on about Paterson's private life. The governor said that investigation has "spawned a bunch of speculations that are so way out that it's shocking."
(CNN) - Most New Yorkers don't think state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo's possible challenge of Gov. David Paterson would be racially divisive, according to a new poll.
A Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday morning indicates that 8 in ten voters, including three-quarters of black voters, say a Democratic primary challenge by Cuomo, who is white, of Paterson, who is black, would not be racially divisive.
According to the poll, 78 percent of New Yorkers are not impatient with Cuomo's delay of any announcement on his possible plans to challenge Paterson, with the high level of patience consistent among all political and racial groups and in every region of the state.
"Unlike the media, New Yorkers aren't impatient for Attorney General Cuomo to admit he's running for Governor," says Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
(CNN) – New York Gov. David Paterson has lost a top advisor to his struggling election bid for a full term in office.
Tracy Sefl, a campaign strategist who is based in Washington, DC, announced Friday she is resigning her post because of "business" reasons.
"It has been a privilege to work for the governor over the past year," Sefl said in a statement. "My decision is a business one and I remain supportive and admiring of him and his agenda for the state. I wish him and his team - both at the campaign and inside the Executive Chamber - much success."
Asked by CNN if the decision may be a reflection of her belief Paterson's chances of reelection are low, Sefl said "that is a good question to ask others."
According to recent polls of New York State voters, Paterson lags nearly 40 points behind his likely primary opponent, Andrew Cuomo.
(CNN) – Two new surveys suggest that David Paterson's poll numbers are inching up - but that the New York governor still trails state attorney general Andrew Cuomo by a wide margin in a hypothetical Democratic primary race.
According to a Quinnipiac University survey released Tuesday, 40 percent of New York's registered voters approve of the job Paterson's doing as governor. That's up 10 points from a Quinnipiac survey in October. The poll indicates that Paterson's disapproval rating has dropped 8 points, from 57 percent in October to 49 percent now.
A Siena College Research Institute survey released Monday suggested a similar trend, with Paterson's favorable rating at 37 percent, up 9 points from earlier this year.
But both polls indicate voters believe Paterson does not deserve election next year to a full four-year term as governor. Fifty-nine percent of people questioned in the Quinnipiac survey say Paterson doesn't deserve to be elected in 2010, a modest improvement from October, when more than two of out three voters felt the governor didn't deserve a full term. The Siena poll also indicates an improvement for Paterson, but less than one in five think he should be elected next year, with nearly two-thirds preferring someone else.
(CNN) -- A new poll suggests that the big television ad push by New York Gov. David Paterson's campaign may not be quite as effective as he'd hoped: A Marist College survey released Friday indicates that 56 percent of New York state voters have seen at least one of Paterson's television commercials - and those who'd seen the ad appeared slightly less likely to support his run.
Sixty-one percent who hadn't seen the ad thought the governor should not remain in the 2010 race. Among those who'd actually seen the spot, that number was roughly 4 points higher: Nearly two-thirds of those who say they've seen the ad don't think Paterson should run in 2010. That 4-point margin is just outside the poll's 3.5 percent sampling error.
Paterson went up on the airwaves last month with a major ad campaign designed to reintroduce himself to voters. His campaign said the commercials would run for several weeks, and constitute a "multi-million dollar" ad buy. A Siena College Research Institute survey released last week gave a hint the spots might not be having the impact Paterson was looking for: Only 21 percent of New Yorkers had a positive opinion of the job he was doing as governor, with 79 percent holding a negative opinion - a result virtually unchanged from his October showing.
The latest Marist poll suggests Paterson, who took office after Eliot Spitzer's scandal-scarred resignation, trails New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo by nearly 51 points in a hypothetical 2010 Democratic primary matchup - with results virtually the same whether or not a voter has seen the governor's new ads.
(CNN) – A new poll suggests that a new television ad push by New York Gov. David Paterson's campaign may not be making an impact so far on voters.
A Siena College Research Institute survey released Monday indicates that only 21 percent of New Yorkers have a positive opinion of the job Paterson's doing as governor, with 79 percent holding a negative opinion - a result virtually unchanged from last month.
According to the poll, Paterson trails Attorney General Andrew Cuomo by nearly 60 points in a hypothetical 2010 Democratic primary matchup. That's a wider lead than Cuomo held in last month's survey. The son of former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo has yet to announce if he'll run for governor.
The poll also indicates that Paterson trails former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani by more than 20 points in a hypothetical general election face off. He also trails former Rep. Rick Lazio in a 2010 general election matchup for the first time, although the Republican's 3-point advantage is within the survey's 3.5 percent sampling error.
(CNN) - In what may be an effort to quiet speculation he will drop his bid for a full term, embattled New York Gov. David Paterson is hitting the airwaves with a major ad buy intended to reintroduce himself to voters.
Just under a year before Election Day, the New York Democrat is going up with two ads statewide that highlight his unique biography and address his critics head on.
"Some say I shouldn't be running for governor," Paterson says in one of the ads, called 'Some say.' "It might have been easier if all I thought about was running for governor. But I think it's more important to do what's right for the people of New York."
The second ad, called "When," notes the governor's blindness and the lessons he has learned from both his successes and failures throughout life.
"When you become governor, you learn you will make mistakes," the ad's narrator states. "But in the depths of a historic recession you take what you have learned and have the strength to do what's right."
Tracy Sefl, a spokeswoman for Paterson, said the commercials will run for several weeks and constitute a "multi-million dollar" ad buy.
The early and expensive advertising blitz is perhaps a gamble for Paterson, whose approval rating stands at 30 percent, according to a recent Quinnipiac University poll. Paterson also trails New York Attorney Gen. Andrew Cuomo by more than 40 points in a hypothetical 2010 Democratic primary match up, according to that poll. Cuomo has not yet announced whether he will challenge Paterson.
But Sefl brushed aside suggestions the campaign is in danger of burning through its coffers before most voters are paying attention, noting they have already received an "incredible response" from supporters who had seen the ads.
"Voters want to hear his story," Sefl said.
Paterson was lieutenant governor when a scandal led to then-Gov. Eliot Spitzer's departure from the office in March 2008.
(CNN) –New York Gov. David Paterson is calling on potential challengers to lay their cards on the table.
"I keep hearing about all these people who are running for office," said Paterson during an appearance on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Monday morning. "If you had any courage, if you wanted to become a leader in a crisis, get up and say what you'd do now."
When Paterson was asked if he had anyone in mind, such as New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo or former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, the governor said said he wasn't talking about anybody in particular.
"When all these phantom people who say they're running for governor get into this race, they are going to have to same questions I've been answering for 18 months," added Paterson. "If they wanted to show that they were different and exciting and would make Albany a different place, why don't they answer those questions now."