Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) supporter and former New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn apologized for comments she made to the New York Post about actress, activist, and New York gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon.
In the interview published on Tuesday, Quinn, who identifies as a lesbian, referred to Nixon as an “unqualified lesbian” and hammered the actress for not supporting her mayoral run. (Nixon supported now-Mayor Bill de Blasio.)
“Cynthia Nixon was opposed to having a qualified lesbian become mayor of New York City,” she told the Post. “Now she wants to be an unqualified lesbian to be the governor of New York. You have to be qualified and have experience. She isn’t qualified to be the governor.”
Nixon announced her candidacy on Monday, and will challenge Gov. Cuomo, who is running for his third term, in the Democratic primary. The actress best known for her role as Miranda Hobbes in HBO’s Sex and the City has never held political office, though she has been politically active on the issues of public education, LGBT rights, and women’s health. In interviews, Nixon has identified herself as bisexual.
Quinn, who was Speaker from January 2006 to December 2013 and ran for mayor in 2013, praised the actress for her political activism for progressive causes, but hit Nixon for lacking political experience.
In 2014, Quinn stumped for Cuomo to make the Women’s Equality Party an official New York state political party. In 2015, Quinn was named a special adviser to Gov. Cuomo.
Nixon, who is running on a progressive platform, responded telling the Post, “It’s time for an outsider. I’m not an Albany insider.”
TIME reached out to Nixon’s campaign.
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