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, 59, of Brooklyn: New York City public advocate since 2014 and a potential 2021 candidate for mayor.
Rep. Kathleen Rice, 53, of Garden City: Represents the Fourth Congressional District in Nassau County. Former Nassau County district attorney.
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, 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.
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, 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).
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.
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.