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8 possible candidates to replace Schneiderman as attorney general

The resignation of New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman suddenly created an opportunity for the state Legislature to appoint a successor through this year and spawned what is expected to be a wide-open field in the September Democratic primary.

Schneiderman resigned Monday night after The New Yorker magazine published accusations of physical abuse by four women.

Several possible candidates will be considered in a vetting process involving Assembly and Senate members, said one Assembly Democrat who is expected to be on the panel.

That could lead to an appointment by the Legislature, which is dominated by Assembly Democrats, before the May 23-24 Democratic state convention in Uniondale. The state Democratic Committee could back that person or nominate another in the convention.

That nominee further could be challenged in a September Democratic primary, which in past years has drawn several candidates and could attract candidates away from Albany such as former federal prosecutor Preet Bharara, who has convicted several Albany officials on corruption charges.

“There will be a bevy of candidates,” said Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan (R-East Northport).

Several Democratic sources said the Assembly majority expects to consider:

Letitia James

NYC Public Advocate Letitia James is seen at
Photo Credit: Jeff Bachner

Letitia James, 59, of Brooklyn: New York City public advocate since 2014 and a potential 2021 candidate for mayor. 

Kathleen Rice

Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice speaks about the
Photo Credit: Howard Schnapp

Rep. Kathleen Rice, 53, of Garden City: Represents the Fourth Congressional District in Nassau County. Former Nassau County district attorney. 

Michael Gianaris

FILE--In this May 6, 2013 file photo, Sen.
Photo Credit: AP/Mike Groll

State Sen. Michael Gianaris, 48, of Astoria: Recently gave up his deputy minority leader position in the Senate to allow reunification of the Senate Democrats with the former Independent Democratic Conference.

Zephyr Teachout

FILE - In this Dec. 3, 2014 file
Photo Credit: AP/Mike Groll

Zephyr Teachout, 46, of Clinton: Fordham University Law School professor and author of books on combating government corruption. Treasurer of the campaign for Cynthia Nixon, who is challenging Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in a Democratic primary. Unsuccessful challenger to Cuomo in the 2014 Democratic primary. 

Richard Brodsky

Democratic candidate for New York attorney general Richard
Photo Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS/Mike Groll

Former Assemb. Richard Brodsky, 72, of Greenburgh: Westchester Democrat who ran unsuccessfully against Schneiderman. Could be appealing to state Assembly Democrats as a candidate to fill the attorney general’s position temporarily. Brodsky teaches at NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.

Leecia Eve

Leecia Eve, deputy secretary for economic development for
Photo Credit: AP/Mike Groll

Leecia Eve, 53, of Buffalo: Senior policy adviser to former Sen. Hillary Clinton. Candidate for New York lieutenant governor, 2005. Daughter of former Assemb. Arthur Eve (D-Buffalo). 

Daniel O'Donnell

file photo Assemblyman Daniel J. O'Donnell, center, voices
Photo Credit: Albany Times Union/Cindy Schultz

Assemb. Daniel O’Donnell, 57, of Manhattan: He has been a member of the chamber since 2003 and is one of the leading voices for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transsexual rights.

Charles Lavine

Assemblyman Chuck Levine speaks during a Town Hall
Photo Credit: Jeff Bachner

Assemb. Charles Lavine, 70, of Glen Cove: Former Glen Cove City Councilman. Elected in 2004 to represent the 17th Assembly district in northeastern Nassau County. Chairman of the Assembly Election Law committee. Dropped out of the race for Nassau County executive in May 2017, and instead backed Democrat Laura Curran.


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