WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino is officially running for Governor of New York state, he announced Wednesday morning in a video release.
"I'm tired of listening to the fairytale when everything is just great, when it's just the opposite," he said in the video.
Astorino cited rising taxes, terrible business conditions, corrupt government and record-breaking electric costs as characteristics of current Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration.
Astorino had been hinting at a run as early as January and appeared on FOX's Sean Hannity Show to criticize Cuomo. He established an exploratory committee on Feb. 3, but cited financial concerns as paramount in his final decision.
Before Astorino goes head-to-head with his fellow Westchester resident, he must first gain the Republican nomination - and he already has some competition.
New York State Republican Committee Chair Ed Cox has said he may run against Cuomo, along with real estate mogul and television personality Donald Trump.
Cuomo has a 50-point advantage in matchups against Astorino and Trump, according to a Siena Research Institute poll.
Astorino began his political career in 2003 when he was elected to the Westchester County Board of Legislators. He failed to unseat County Executive Andy Spano in 2005, but returned to defeat Spano by 16 percent in 2009.
He won re-election in Nov. 2013 against challenger Noam Bramson, the current mayor of New Rochelle.
Before committing to politics full-time, he was a sports talk show host, first for WFAS in White Plains, then later as a founding member of 1050 AM ESPN Radio in New York City in 2001. He also served as executive producer for "The Michael Kay Show," hosted by the New York Yankees television personality.
In 2007, Astorino was hired as the program director for Sirius Satellite Radio's "Catholic Channel."
Astorino grew up in Thornwood, graduating from Westlake High School in Mount Pleasant in 1985. He graduated from Fordham University in 1989.
Cuomo was elected in 2010. He married Bedford resident Kerry Kennedy, the seventh child of Robert F. Kennedy, in 1992. They separated in 2003 and divorced in 2005.
In 2011, Cuomo began living with Food Network host Sandra Lee. The two reside on the Mount Kisco-New Castle border.
The N.Y. State Republican Convention will be held May 14 and 15 at the Hilton Westchester in Rye Brook.
Eric Gendron contributed to this report.
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