PURCHASE, N.Y. — Indivisible Westchester hosted a forum Thursday night at Manhattanville College in Purchase for the democratic candidates for both governor and lieutenant governor.
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul and her opponent Brooklyn Councilman Jumaane Williams took the stage together, each separately discussing issues including gun control and immigration.
Although candidate Cynthia Nixon and Gov. Andrew Cuomo were both invited, the governor was unable to attend.
A spokesperson for Cuomo’s campaign told PIX11 News that the governor is at a labor conference in Lake George, which had been on his schedule.
Several people showed up to the forum, unaware that Cuomo would not be there.
“I hope he doesn’t take the residents of Westchester County for granted by not appearing,” said Kelli Higgs, of White Plains.
Jenny Geer, of Mamaroneck, said she understands the governor is busy, but that this was an important event.
“I think he’s probably made a mistake not to come," she said.
Indivisible Westchester said it tried to work with the governor’s schedule.
“We have been negotiating with the governor’s office for weeks,” co-founder Shannon Powell said. “We offered to have him Skype in, but that didn’t work out.”
PIX11 asked those at the forum who they thought would win the nomination.
“While I think that Cynthia Nixon is a very appealing candidate, she just doesn’t have the background,” Geer said. “I think it’s a very big risk.”
Higgs, however, is "certain she will give Gov. Cuomo a run for his money."
The governor's office told PIX11 that Cuomo is scheduled to meet with Indivisible Westchester next week. Indivisible Westchester confirmed that the governor offered to meet with their leadership team then.