Cynthia Nixon asked weary New York City subway riders to talk about their commutes on social media on Thursday morning and call out Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “sham subway plan.”
New Yorkers: Tomorrow (Thursday) we’re going to some of New York City’s busiest subway stations from 7am to 9am in order to call out #CuomosMTA and address the urgent need to #FixOurSubway! We need you to show up and join us: https://t.co/mmxarstKmX. pic.twitter.com/TBHF2yzO4R
— Cynthia Nixon (@CynthiaNixon) May 16, 2018
The appeal by Nixon, who is challenging Cuomo for governor this year, encouraged riders to flood their Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media pages with “stories of your nightmarish subway commute” and the hashtags #CuomosMTA, #FixOurSubway, and #CynthiaForNY from 7 to 9 a.m.
“We need to let voters know that the emergency rescue of our subway system will be a top priority for Cynthia Nixon as Governor of New York. Getting to work on time shouldn’t be an impossible task,” reads a Google doc that she shared on Twitter.
my girl @LauraFFeinstein waited 30 minutes at the Lorimer L stop as 3 trains passed that were too crowded for anyone to board. literally contorted herself to get on the 4th train. She missed a doctors appointment as a result of #CuomosMTA. but at least @CynthiaNixon was there. pic.twitter.com/QHLPRAXuIw
— marisa kabas (@MarisaKabas) May 17, 2018
The campaign sent out sample social media posts for people to use and even created T-shirts using her ads’ imagery:
Nixon has for years criticized Cuomo’s administration, going so far as to call it an “exercise in living with disappointment, dysfunction and dishonesty,” and she’s been particularly critical of his inaction on fixing the subway system.
From delays to overcrowding to fare hikes and everything in between, the city’s subway system has been in desperate need of an overhaul for decades. Nixon has been seen riding the subway all over the city and has been late to campaign events because of the MTA’s unreliability, all in an effort to tell angry New Yorkers that she’s here to help everyone get to work on time.
Thursday morning’s campaign received much praise on Twitter, with many remarking on the advertisements and sharing their commuting plight:
— Nathan H. Rubin (@NathanHRubin) May 17, 2018
People trying to leave 1st Ave station on the L are down to a single-file line because the platform is too crowded with people that couldn’t board a broken train. #CuomosMTA #FixTheSubway @CynthiaNixon pic.twitter.com/G064GmIOvg
— Chris O'Leary (@ohhleary) May 17, 2018
— Kayla Cluff (@KaylaCluff) May 17, 2018
— Katie Pawluk (@VeryKatie) May 17, 2018
— Bay?Ridge?Drivers (@BayRidgeDrivers) May 17, 2018
When I lived in NYC I had an unfulfilled vision of organizing the public by canvassing the subways taking about transit, climate change, affordable housing, and workers rights.So great to see @CynthiaNixon @WorkingFamilies @MaketheRoadNY doing it now.#CuomosMTA #FixOurSubway https://t.co/rFoCd1lyzz
— Ady Barkan? (@AdyBarkan) May 17, 2018
In an email to HuffPost, a spokeswoman from Cuomo’s office said of the ad campaign, “Actors are trained to make fiction sound believable and this morning’s performance was more of the same. We share Ms. Nixon’s frustration with the delay of much needed subway repairs ― she should call her friend the Mayor and ask why he refused to fully fund the subway action plan for nearly a year.”
Nixon’s campaign comes at a pivotal time for New Yorkers, particularly for those who travel between Brooklyn and Manhattan on the L line.
The L train will shut down for 15 months starting next year for repairs to the Canarsie tunnel, which was damaged in 2012 by flooding from Superstorm Sandy. The L line transports 24,100 people per hour across the East River during the morning rush, and the MTA is expecting up to 80 percent of those riders to opt for subway alternatives, despite those alternatives not being remotely sufficient to handle the upcoming spike in ridership.
NYC’s exhausted subway riders are hoping that whoever is in the governor’s mansion next year can help make their commutes a little less painful.