Since everybody who fancies him or her self a talking head or a pundit is weighing in on NY26, a few observations of my own.
Rep-elect Kathy Hochul in large part did well because she was a hard working, good candidate who came across well to voters compared to her self financed and mistake prone opponents.
The craven exploitation of the Medicare issue helped, as so did the juvenile attempt at an ambush of the elderly third party candidate by a staffer for GOP candidate Jane Corwin, who reacted pitfully to the incident.
A variety of factors enter a race like this, but as many times as the favorite may err, it still requires a solid campaign effort by someone to take advantage of it. Ms. Hochul, regardless of issues, did a good job and was able to take advantage of her opponents weaknesses. A lot of people liked her. That is often why people vote for someone.