(WIVB) – Former New York governor Andrew Cuomo has released a new TV ad, which looks to be another campaign commercial.

Local political experts told News 4 that at this point, it’s hard to tell if the former governor is
preparing to run for office, or if this is his way of trying to repair his image.

“Maybe he’s not going to run this year, maybe he is just looking at rehabilitating his image for maybe another future run at some other office,” said Shawn Donahue, a UB political science professor.

Cuomo resigned last August after facing several allegations sexual harassment. He’s now re-emerging in the public eye.

“If the governor is thinking about potentially running for statewide office, this would be the opportune time to be putting out some things to let people know that that’s what he’s thinking about doing,” Donahue said.

“He’s not the sort of person to retire. He’s not the sort of person to sit around and go work at a law firm, or an investment brokerage,” said political analyst Jack O’Donnell. “I think Andrew Cuomo is doing what he’s always done, politics.”

A recent poll by Nexstar Media found Cuomo would only be a few points behind Governor Kathy Hochul should he decide to run in the democratic primary.

“That’s a little higher than I thought. Andrew Cuomo does well in that poll,” O’Donnell said. “Even in that poll though, there’s 60% of democratic voters who want to support someone else.”

“There have been some polls that have come out measuring democratic primary party support,” said Congressman Lee Zeldin. “Cuomo does have some support inside the democratic primary party, that’s true, but when you go outside the democratic party, it falls fast.”

Zeldin, who is running for governor on the republican line, said that if Cuomo throws his hat in the race, it could only benefit Zeldin himself.

“He’s pulling support from Kathy Hochul, he’s not pulling support from us,” he told News 4. “We feel very good about our strategy — our pathway to victory — if we are only running against Kathy Hochul. But if Andrew Cuomo gets in the race, that only helps increase the margin that we will win November 8th.”

If Cuomo is petitioning to run for governor, or any other seat in office as a democrat, he has until April 7 to file. If he runs as an independent he has until May 31.

News 4 reached out to Cuomo’s spokesman, asking if he had any update about the former governor’s political plans. We have not yet heard back.

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.