To Resign or Not to Resign, That is the Question for Another Hamlet on the Hudson

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Thomas J. Madden, Chairman and CEO, Transmedia Group

Will besieged Gov. Andrew Cuomo like his dad before him be the second Hamlet on the Hudson?  

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign, following a report of the sixth woman accusing the governor of sexual misconduct.  

Would now the governor look at a picture of his dad and say alas poor Yorick “Me Too” got me.

Mayor de Blasio said that the latest accusation is too much and Cuomo must go.

Joining him are a blizzard of New York lawmakers calling for Gov. Cuomo to either resign or be impeached

Ironically, the Governor’s dad was widely considered a potential front-runner for the Democratic nomination for president in both 1988 and 1992, though he declined to seek the nomination both times. 

His legacy as a reluctant standard-bearer for the Democrats in presidential elections led to his being dubbed “Hamlet on the Hudson.” 

Mario was defeated for a fourth term as governor by George Pataki in what was then the Republican Revolution of 1994.

Reporters at the time equated Mario Cuomo’s agonizing over whether to seek the presidency with a Shakespearian drama, all the way to dubbing him “Hamlet on the Hudson” for his “to be or not to be” president brooding.

It was carried to an extreme in late 1991 when Cuomo dragged out the suspense for nearly three months before waiting until 90 minutes before the filing deadline in New Hampshire before taking himself out of the competition.

And in 2019, his son might have been looking at a revival of that same play as the rumor was that he was mulling over a 2020 run to bump off  President Trump and take a shot at becoming the third sitting New York governor (and seventh incumbent governor overall) to relocate to the White House. The other two from the Empire State were Franklin Roosevelt and Grover Cleveland.

But the current New York governor apparently was unwilling to endure “the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune” in a growing field that presented “a sea of troubles” for an establishment figure (Cuomo is not only a third-term governor, but a former HUD Secretary during the Clinton Administration and, for 15 years, a Kennedy son-in-law– getting married, no less, in the same church that was the site of JFK’s funeral mass).

Now the governor is strutting and fretting perhaps his final hour on the stage as his majesty the governor of New York.  

Now he is facing renewed calls for him to resign over allegations of sexual indiscretions or misconduct, which he seems to feel are mere friendly, warm-hearted manifestations of a loving Italian nature. 

But the feeling is hardly ubiquitous as the curtain for Act III opens.