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Who Is Cuomo's Possible Successor, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul?

ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- The controversy swirling around Gov. Andrew Cuomo even has some Democrats calling for his resignation.

That has put a spotlight on the woman who would succeed him, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul.

In her seventh year as lieutenant governor, Hochul has forged a reputation as personable and tireless, CBS2's Tony Aiello reported.

If there's a ribbon to be cut anywhere in New York, she seems to be there with a smile.

"Indefatigable. I've never seen anyone with her energy," Livingston County Democratic Chair Judith Hunter told Aiello.

Hunter called Hochul an "exceptional public servant."

After 15 years in Buffalo-area local politics, Hochul was elected to Congress, winning a 2011 special election while doing well with Republican voters. Cuomo picked her as lieutenant governor in 2014, and she beat back a primary challenge from progressive Jumaane Williams in 2018.

As for her political philosophy?

"She's not easy to pigeonhole that way," said Hunter. "She sees it as important to judge each issue as it comes along."

"In your experience, she's not strongly ideological, she's a little more practical?" Aiello asked.

"That would be fair, that would be fair," Hunter replied.

Hochul is not viewed as part of Cuomo's inner circle. Still, if circumstances unfold and she's a candidate for governor in 2022, Republicans are prepared to link her to the Cuomo controversies.

"These serious allegations of sexual harassment are deeply concerning. I think the question that everyone's going to be asking is, 'What does she know?'" said GOP consultant Jessica Proud.

For her part, Hochul released a 16-word statement, reading, "Everyone deserves to have their voice heard and to be taken seriously. I support an independent review."

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