New York Gov. Hochul defeats GOP's Zeldin

Zeldin had mounted a strong challenge by focusing on crime and inflation in the state.
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New York Governor Kathy Hochul speaks to the media during her swearing in ceremony at the New York State Capitol in Albany, New York on August 24, 2021.
NY Gov. Kathy Hochul
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New York Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul defeated GOP challenger Lee Zeldin, in a race Republican had eyed as a rare win in a liberal-leaning state.

The Associated Press called the race for Hochul with 89% of precincts reporting.She took 52.9% of the vote to Zeldin's 47.1%.

The last time the state had a GOP governor was in 2007 with George Pataki.

Zeldin had mounted a strong challenge by focusing on crime and inflation in the state, a claim in part bolstered by an attack against him on the campaign trail. 

Hochul came to office following the resignation of Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who was facing multiple scandals involving sexual harassment and his policy of placing COVID-19-infected individuals in nursing homes.

She previously served as lieutenant governor and is the state's first woman to hold the top job.