Albany, NY – In response to Governor Cuomo’s statement that he is a “middle-class guy” who has represented working people “from day one,” Karen Scharff, Executive Director of Citizen Action of New York, said:

“If Andrew Cuomo’s idea of middle-class is Andrew Cuomo, then that would explain a lot about his policies. It would explain why he’s consistently given tax cuts to the wealthiest households in New York–like his own–while neglecting the true middle and working class families of our state.

“The Governor claims to have represented middle-class workers since ‘day one,’ but the reality is that Andrew Cuomo started on day one by creating the so-called Committee to Save NY, which raised money from real estate developers and other corporate interests to promote cuts to public education and reduced pension benefits for state workers.

“These cuts hit hard in Upstate New York. And now, at a time when unemployment is rising upstate, the governor is still painfully out of touch with the economic realities facing our communities.

“If the Governor is middle-class, then by comparison the communities of upstate New York are destitute–making it all the more inexcusable that he’s left us behind.”