Cynthia Nixon knocks Cuomo but won’t commit to challenge him

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ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Actress Cynthia Nixon has plenty of criticism for Gov. Andrew Cuomo, though she's not saying whether she'll run against him next year.

Appearing on NBC's "Today" show Tuesday, the "Sex and the City" star wouldn't answer when asked whether she plans to mount a campaign, but said she has heard "rumors" about her potential challenge to Cuomo in next year's Democratic primary.

"I think there are a lot of people who would like me to run, and I think for a variety of reasons," she said. "But I think the No. 1 is education. We've got a real problem on our hands in New York state."

She went on to criticize Cuomo's handling of public education, saying the gap between rich and poor schools has never been greater.

Cuomo has been mentioned as a possible White House candidate in 2020, though he says he's planning to seek a third term in 2018.

Rich Azzopardi, the governor's spokesman, noted that state funding for schools is at an all-time high under Cuomo and that 70 percent of it goes to "high-needs" schools. He extended an open invitation to Nixon to meet with Cuomo.

"The more people talking about issues that make New York state stronger, the better," he said. "We know Ms. Nixon is a passionate advocate for education, and we would be happy to sit down with her anytime to talk about it."

Nixon has been active in New York City politics, particularly in education advocacy, and has supported Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio. Her name emerged as a potential candidate for governor last week after liberal activists said she would make a good candidate.

She noted on "Today" that she has three children who have attended New York public schools.