The political world is reacting to the death of three-term Gov. Mario Cuomo, who died Thursday just hours after his son, Andrew, was sworn in for his second term as governor.
"Michelle and I were saddened to learn of the passing of former New York Governor Mario Cuomo. An Italian Catholic kid from Queens, born to immigrant parents, Mario paired his faith in God and faith in America to live a life of public service - and we are all better for it. He rose to be chief executive of the state he loved, a determined champion of progressive values, and an unflinching voice for tolerance, inclusiveness, fairness, dignity, and opportunity. His own story taught him that as Americans, we are bound together as one people, and our country's success rests on the success of all of us, not just a fortunate few. Michelle and I extend our deepest condolences to Mario's wife Matilda, his children, Governor Andrew Cuomo, Maria, Margaret, Madeline, and Chris, and his family, friends, and New Yorkers who loved him dearly." — President Obama
"Tonight, New York has lost a giant. Mario Cuomo was a man of unwavering principle who possessed a compassion for humankind that was without equal. He established the gold standard in New York State for how public servants should act, and set an example that the rest of us continue to aspire to today. He was a man who campaigned with poetry and governed with beautiful prose. He was a man who always stood for what he believed in, no matter what challenges were before him. He taught us how the family of New York-and indeed the family of Americans-must always support those most in need of help. And he was a leader who always brought New York State to a better place. As he would often remind us, the state's motto was 'Excelsior' or 'Ever Upward.' Mario Cuomo personified the idea of New York, always urging us to look 'ever upward.' Excelsior, Governor Cuomo. We will never forget his legacy.On behalf of the people of New York City and my family, our thoughts and prayers are with Matilda Cuomo, Governor Cuomo, and the entire Cuomo family." — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio
"Our deepest condolences on the passing of Gov Cuomo a proud son of immigrants, possessed of a soaring intellect & a great New Yorker. "— Former New York Governor George Pataki
"From the hard streets of Queens, Mario Cuomo rose to the very pinnacle of political power in New York because he believed in his bones in the greatness of this state, the greatness of America and the unique potential of every individual. From soaring oratory that stirred the very soul to painstaking coalition building to advance policies and accomplishments, he was a colossal political mind and represented the very best of public service; he leaves an indelible legacy on the state he loved." — U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y.
"Mario Cuomo was a giant of New York government and politics. As much as anyone he understood and appreciated the mosaic that was New York. All who knew Mario Cuomo were better for it. My thoughts and prayers are with the Cuomo family. RIP." — U.S. Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y.
"Mario Cuomo inspired millions of people around the country with his vision for a more compassionate and just society, and during difficult times for our city and state, he brought principled and ethical leadership to Albany. He never swayed with the political winds - whether on the death penalty or any other issue - and he earned a spot alongside Theodore Roosevelt, Charles Evans Hughes, Al Smith, and Franklin Roosevelt in the pantheon of New York's great progressive governors. " — Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg
"The passing of Governor Mario Cuomo is a true loss to the nation, the state and lovers of civil rights and liberties. He was the last liberal giant of New York politics and was a true statesman/politician. We debated often but he never would reduce our disagreements to petty personal grudges. He was a philosopher at heart that always saw the bigger picture." — The Rev. Al Sharpton
"Our country and our region lost a giant today with the passing of Governor Mario Cuomo. He was a strong, eloquent leader who loved New York and its people. As an Italian-American, he was also a role model for future generations that anything was possible through hard work and education. Finally, he was a great husband, father and grandfather." — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie
The Associated Press contributed to this report