HEMPSTEAD - The seven candidates for governor of New York squared off in a debate tonight at Hofstra University.

The News 12/Newsday debate featured Democrat Andrew Cuomo, Republican Carl Paladino and five third-party candidates.

To view the entire debate, go to Channel 612 on your iO Digital Cable Box and select iO Extra or Island Vote '10.

Paladino began by saying that New York is being dragged under by "out-of-control costs."

Cuomo spoke heavily about how government is over-bloated saying, "We have too many governments in the state of New York? You have to consolidate those governments. We can't afford them anymore."

While the debate occasionally shifted somewhat off-topic, political analysts said it generally moved smoothly with all candidates being able to bring their unique points of view to the issues.