As she was sworn in for a full term on Sunday, Gov. Kathy Hochul continued to push a theme of working together in the often fractious world of New York politics.
But despite the talk of unity, Hochul is still facing a potential battle over the confirmation of her nominee to lead the state's top court amid growing opposition from members of her own party.
In recent days, opposition has steadily grown to the confirmation of Judge Hector LaSalle to become chief judge of the state Court of Appeals. The number of no votes among Democrats in the state Senate has grown so exponentially that Hochul would need Republican votes for his approval at this point, an unlikely scenario given majority party lawmakers never want to rely on the other side of the aisle to win legislation or nominations.
And powerful lawmakers are lining up against the nomination. This week, Deputy Senate Majority Leader Mike Gianaris signaled his opposition as unions and criminal justice advocacy groups urge Hochul to withdraw the nomination.
Progressive advocates point to LaSalle's prior rulings on cases surrounding organized labor as well as his background as a former assistant district attorney in Suffolk County. The governor, meanwhile, is trying to salvage the nomination, which requires confirmation by the state Senate.
"There's been pressure from both sides with information about the judge with a positive point of view," said state Sen. Robert Jackson, a Democrat from Manhattan. "The governor is reaching out to many people."
Jackson is among the Democrats who has signaled he will vote against LaSalle.
"I've communicated based on what I've read so far that I will not be voting for him," he said. "But I'm open, but that's the reality of the way the process works."
Allies of LaSalle in recent days have swung into action. A group called Latinos for LaSalle is backing his nomination. Hochul ally and state Democratic Committee Chairman Jay Jacobs said lawmakers would be making a mistake to deny LaSalle a hearing.
"You've got to give him that opportunity," Jacobs said. "If you don't give him that opportunity, then you're doing exactly what Mitch McConnell and the Republicans did so vehemently."
Senate Democrats risk appearing obstructionist with their opposition, he added.
"Leaders of the Senate, they don't want to become the Mitch McConnell of New York," he said. "He didn't allow Obama's nomination to go forward, you can't do that. So they got to give a person a hearing."
Senate Democratic spokesman Mike Murphy in response called Jacobs' comment "unhelpful."
And the final word will still rest with the senate.
"It's only a recommendation — the nomination," Jackson said. "The decision is up to the New York state Senate."