Jan 02, 2015
By Andy Johnson
Accolades are pouring in for three-term New York governor Mario Cuomo who died of heart failure New Year’s day at the age of 82. U.S. President Barack Obama praised Cuomo as an unflinching voice for tolerance, fairness and opportunity. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Cuomo “never swayed with the political winds” and earned a spot with the state’s greatest leaders. Syracuse University political science professor Kristi Andersen says the former governor was not afraid to take controversial positions. She says Cuomo was vehemently opposed to the death penalty and supported women’s rights to abortions despite being Roman Catholic. Cuomo was known for his liberal views and public speeches, particularly his keynote speech at the 1984 Democratic National Convention where he criticized Ronald Reagan’s policies. The New York state governor’s office confirmed Cuomo’s death just hours after his son Andrew started his second term as governor of the state.