Former Sex and the City star Cynthia Nixon said on Twitter Monday that she'll challenge Gov. Andrew Cuomo in New York's Democratic primary in September.

Her announcement sets up a race pitting an openly gay liberal activist against a two-term incumbent with a $30m war chest and possible presidential ambitions.

In a video on Twitter, the public education advocate said, "We want our government to work again."

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Nixon in recent speeches has called on Democrats nationally to carve out a strong liberal identity instead of being merely the "anti-Trump party."

The 51-year-old Manhattan mother of three is an ally of Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who frequently clashes with Cuomo on various issues.

The 60-year-old Cuomo was favoured 66 percent to 19 percent over Nixon in a recent Siena College poll.

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