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Governor-Hopeful Cuomo Visits Ithaca


You might not expect the favorite in the polls to be the next governor of New York to be greeted by many protesters.

But that was the scene in Ithaca Thursday as Andrew Cuomo stopped through town on the campaign trail.

Hundreds of protesters gathered outside the building where Cuomo was scheduled to speak.

They insist that the draft general environmental impact statement, or DGEIS, would not fully protect the Southern Tier if and when hydro fracking is allowed in New York.

"Reject that draft, get rid of it, eat it, send it back to the drawing board," said Walter Hang.

"It's woefully inadequate," said Ellen Harrison of Caroline, NY.

Inside, Cuomo took to the podium, but did not comment on drilling during his speech.

Afterwards, the democratic candidate for governor tip-toed around the issue.

"If there's an economic advantage to pursue, we should pursue it. However, we should not pursue it unless and until we know that environmentally it is safe, for the environment, health and safety, water resources etcetera," Cuomo said.

'Safety' is a great start, activists say, but if elected governor, Cuomo needs to translate that into action.

"The question is how is that going to happen in light of this weak, inadequate proposed set of regulations," Hang said.

And some say that if it's up to them, Cuomo won't become governor if he doesn't take a hard stance on drilling.

"If he supports hydro fracking, I will not vote for him," Decastro said.
Cuomo will face the winner of the Republican primary between Rick Lazio and Carl Paladino in November's election.


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