Cuomo, Nixon exchange blows in tense primary debate

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) and actress Cynthia Nixon traded personal barbs Wednesday night during a tense gubernatorial primary debate.

Arguments erupted over the degree to which each candidate has opposed President TrumpDonald John TrumpAdvisor: Sanders could beat Trump in Texas Bloomberg rips Sanders over Castro comments What coronavirus teaches us for preventing the next big bio threat MORE, New York City's subway system, health care and corruption during the 60-minute debate . 

Cuomo is the heavy favorite to win a third term in the Sept. 13 primary against political newcomer Nixon, who trails Cuomo in every public poll, according to The Washington Post.


The debate became heated following a question about New York's MTA, which Nixon said Cuomo had left underfunded.

Cuomo was responding to Nixon's claim that he "used the MTA like an ATM," when Nixon cut in.

“Can you stop interrupting?” Cuomo asked.

“Can you stop lying?” Nixon responded.

“Yeah, as soon as you do,” Cuomo said.

Cuomo also attempted to portray himself as an example to Democrats of strong opposition to Trump. 

“No one has stood up to Donald Trump the way I have,” he said.

Nixon disagreed, responding, “You stood up to him about as well as he stood up to Putin.” 

Siena College poll released in late July found Cuomo with a 60 to 29 percent edge over Nixon among likely Democratic voters. He has maintained a steady lead in polls ahead of the September primary.

Despite trailing in the polls, Nixon's campaign hopes the gubernatorial candidate can ride a progressive wave in her race against Cuomo, according to The New York Times. Her team, the Times reported, has pointed to the stunning victories of New York Democratic House candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in June and the nomination of Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum on Tuesday for Florida governor.