PHILADELPHIA (AP) — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo addressed his party's national convention Wednesday night, praising Hillary Clinton, honoring his late father and warning of dire consequences if Donald Trump wins the White House.
In a 15-minute address to Democrats gathered in Philadelphia, the son of former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo said that while Clinton could be a "transformative" leader, Republicans seek to use fear to divide the country.
"At stake in this election my friends is the very soul of America," he said.
Calling diversity the country's "greatest strength," he faulted Republicans for trying to use fear as a political tool.
"Fear is a powerful weapon. It can excite and motivate and it can get people to yell and to scream," he said. "But fear has never created a job. Fear has never educated a child. Fear has never built a home. Fear has never built a community. And fear will never build a nation."
Cuomo touted recent liberal victories in his state, including paid family leave, a ban on fracking and a plan to phase in a $15 minimum wage.
Cuomo served as housing secretary in President Bill Clinton's cabinet and has been mentioned as a possible presidential contender himself. Now in his second term, Cuomo has said he intends to seek re-election and has no plans to run for president or serve in a possible Hillary Clinton administration.
He won applause from the crowd when he mentioned his father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo, who delivered a memorable keynote address at the 1984 Democratic convention. The elder Cuomo died last year. Andrew Cuomo wore his father's old watch during Thursday night's speech.
"Tonight, pop, where you are — and I think I know where — at this time of fear, please help this country remember what truly makes it great," he said. "That we are one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
The speech failed to impress at least one New York Republican. GOP strategist and party spokeswoman Jessica Proud wrote in a tweet that "unfortunately for Andrew, this speech just highlights the talents he didn't inherit from his father."