NEW YORK -- The day reserved for a Democratic party debate on Time Warner Cable News between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and challenger Zephyr Teachout came and went, but on Tuesday, the governor said agreeing to a debate has nothing to do with supporting the democratic process.
"I've been in many debates that I think were a disservice to democracy, so anyone who says debates are always a service to democracy hasn't watched all the debates I have been in," said Gov. Cuomo, D-New York.
Cuomo had avoided answering questions about whether he would debate Teachout, saying all the while he would let his campaign aides decide.
Meanwhile, Cuomo's running mate, former Congresswoman Kathy Hochul campaigned at a senior center in Brooklyn with New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray. Hochul scoffed at suggestions that her opponent Tim Wu has been gaining momentum.
"I'm not sensing momentum. No. I think you'll see," said Hochul. "You want to peek on election day? This is my fourth election in five years. I've been underestimated in many of my runs for office."
On Tuesday, Wu and Teachout received the endorsement of former public advocate Mark Green, who ran against Cuomo for state attorney general in 2006.
"I'd hoped for a governor that was more principle than political. More candid than transactional," Green said.
Earlier in the day, Cuomo met with prominent Jewish leaders to brief them on his August trip to Israel. The governor downplayed any suggestion that the trip was political, and said he is not sure whether Jewish voters here in New york will reward him for it.
"I don't know, in truth. I think it was clear that this was the time to go, right? You say it's a political year. I frankly think more relevant is that it's a period of conflict and war," said Cuomo.
On Tuesday, Wu refused to weigh in on the question of Israel.
"I haven't taken a position on that. As Zephyr has said many times, I believe in peace for all humanity, and I'm focused right now on the lieutenant governor race. I really haven't had time to focus on overseas conflicts," Wu said.