The Empire State Pride Agenda on Thursday announced it was endorsing Gov. Andrew Cuomo after he sent a letter to the LGBT-rights group re-affirming his support for the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act.

In the letter from Cuomo to ESPA Chairman Norman Simon, Cuomo writes that he is reiterating his “deep commitment to protect the rights of all New Yorkers, including those in the transgendered community.”

“As my first term as Governor comes to a close, I am reaffirming my commitment to the progressive ideals and sense of equality that we have advanced and continue to hold dear,” Cuomo wrote in the letter, dated Aug. 19. “In this regard, I look forward to continuing my pledge to have our laws and policies reflect the core values of New Yorkers: equality and fairness for all.”

In making its endorsement, ESPA Executive Director Nathan Schaefer cited Cuomo’s efforts to pass the legalization of same-sex marriage in 2011 — an episode that remains one of the signature achievements of the governor’s first term.

“We’re proud to endorse Governor Cuomo and these other worthy statewide candidates for office for their support on issues important to LGBT New Yorkers,” Schaefer said in a statement. “In particular, we appreciate Governor Cuomo’s leadership in securing marriage equality in our great Empire State, and his more recent removal of the unnecessary and unfair barriers that preclude transgender New Yorkers from having access to birth certificates that reflect their accurate gender identity. We’re also so pleased to have this letter in hand, highlighting the Governor’s commitment to the passage of GENDA.”

The letter is the firmest stance Cuomo has taken in favor of GENDA in recent months, which he did put much emphasis on during the most recent legislative session.

Since the passage of the same-sex marriage law, some of the more high-profile LGBT issues have stalled in Albany, including GENDA. In the most recent legislative session, a measure that would have banned what’s known as gay conversion therapy did not muster the needed votes in the state Senate for passage, though it did make in-roads with the addition of a Republican co-sponsor.

Cuomo faces a Democratic primary challenge from Fordham law professor Zephyr Teachout, who has been seeking to channel the unrest within the liberal advocacy community over the governor’s record, which has been liberal on social issues, but decidedly moderate on the fiscal and economic side.

ESPA has also endorsed Cuomo’s pick for lieutenant governor, Kathy Hochul, as well as Democrats Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.

Gov Letter by Nick Reisman