Lee Zeldin, a Republican congressman, gained ground on Kathy Hochul by concentrating almost exclusively on the topic of crime.

However, Hochul was able to stave off Zeldin's late, significant surge and secure her first full term as governor.

Hochul entered the general election as the overwhelming favourite despite having only a little time under his belt

as governor after succeeding Andrew Cuomo after the latter's departure last summer.

She defeated opposition from the left, led by the city's public advocate, Jumaane Williams, and the right,

led by Congressman Tom Suozzi, who, in a preview of what was to come in the fall, attacked her over crime, to win 66 percent of the vote in the June primary.

Zeldin, on the other hand, defeated Andrew Giuliani, his closest challenger

by a margin of more than ten points to win the Republican nomination.

The governor was an active fundraiser who had no trouble building up a massive war chest in the millions.

In addition to the benefit of being the incumbent, Hochul also had history on her side: Since George Pataki's unsuccessful run for governor in 1994, New York had not elected a Republican to a statewide position.