BOLTON LANDING – Republican attorney general candidate Keith Wofford said Monday he’s opponent was “hand-picked” by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and lacks the independence needed for the office.
Wofford said independence was the “No. 1 difference” between himself and Letitia “Tish” James, who won a crowded Democratic primary on Sept. 13 with Cuomo’s help. James’ alliance with Cuomo. Wofford, a private-sector attorney, questioned whether James, as attorney general, could be counted on to monitor and investigate the executive branch of state government.
“The governor not only hand-picked my opponent, he also paid for her television ads. He’s held fundraisers for her,” Wofford said. “It’s an irreconcilable conflict.”
Wofford’s remarks came at the annual conference of the New York State Business Council, a must-do event for politicians in a statewide election year. Cuomo is slated to address the group Tuesday; Republican gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro was scheduled to speak later Monday.
James, who currently serves as New York City public advocate, wasn’t expected to appear at the conference, a council member said.
James won a four-way Democratic primary thanks to help from Cuomo, the state Democratic Committee (which the governor controls) and major unions who backed her.