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Cuomo speaks at Democratic National Convention

Karen DeWitt

Gov. Andrew Cuomo got his moment on the convention stage Thursday night before Hillary Clinton’s speech.

Cuomo delivered his speech before the prime time program began, around 7:30 p.m., and he started the speech by mentioning his father, and Mario Cuomo’s famous 1984 Tale of Two Cities speech at the San Francisco convention 32 years ago.

Cuomo said the issues his father named, as a counter point to then President Ronald Reagan’s philosophy of government, resonate again today. But he says this time it’s “the very soul of America” is at stake. And he accused the Republicans of capitalizing on fear, of immigrants and of people who are different from them.

“Fear is not strength, fear is weakness,” Cuomo said. “And no matter how loud you yell, our America is never weak.”

Cuomo then went on to list his accomplishments, including raising the minimum wage in New York, and enacting paid family leave and marriage equality, and banning hydrofracking.

Finally, he turned to his party’s presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, saying he spent eight years in former President Bill Clinton’s administration, and worked with her as Senator. He says Hillary Clinton is a “unifying” force.

“My friends, she won’t just shatter the glass ceiling for my daughters and your daughters, and provide a new role model for an entire generation of women. She also has the vision, intelligence and qualifications to be a transformative force for this nation,” Cuomo said.

Cuomo ended his speech with a plea to his late father.

“And tonight, Pop, wherever you are, and I think I know where, at this time of fear, help this country remember what truly makes it great,” he said.

The speech capped three days of events at the DNC for Cuomo, who also spoke to labor and gay rights groups.