Liz issued the following statement Monday evening congratulating the Senate Democratic Conference’s new leader, Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins, immediately following the Senate Democratic Conference’s leadership vote.

“I would like to thank and congratulate John Sampson for his more than three years of service in what is the toughest job in New York State politics. John Sampson took the reins in our conference’s darkest moment and led us in the hardest circumstances a Senate Democratic leader has ever faced. Three years later we are in a better place, we have a better conference, and we have a bright future ahead of us — and he has led us to this point.

“I am thrilled to congratulate my friend and colleague Senator Andrea Stewart Cousins on her victory in our conference’s leadership vote. As DSCC Chair in the 2004 and 2006 cycles, it was my privilege to help Andrea defeat Republican Deputy Majority Leader Nick Spano. Now, six years later, I am thrilled to see her become both the leader of our conference and the first woman ever to lead a conference in the New York State Legislature. The contrast between Spano and Andrea is emblematic of the contrast between the Senate of the past and the new Senate our Democratic Conference will fight every day to create: one that is responsible, responsive, and whose ethics are beyond question.

“Under Andrea’s leadership we will continue fight for the values shared overwhelmingly by New Yorkers across the state, we will take back the majority, and we will fundamentally reform the way Albany does business.”