Letitia A. James
BACKGROUND: James, 59, Brooklyn, is the New York City public advocate and won the Democratic Party’s endorsement, but not the nomination, at its convention in May. James has been endorsed by most of the influential Democratic clubs and organizations in the state. She was a public defender and served on the New York City Council from 2004 to 2014 when she was elected public advocate, where she has expanded the office to introduce many bills aimed at protecting citizens’ rights and protections for consumers. She is a former public defender and adviser for former Gov. Mario Cuomo before working on Assembly staff and for former Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. She is a Howard University Law School graduate.
ISSUES: James is also endorsed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo but has repeatedly said she will be independent of the governor and head of the party. “He has a very strong personality. He is also is very peculiar,” she said in a recent debate where her independence was questioned. James has promised to take her progressive background to the attorney general’s office where she would enforce and protect civil rights, combat gun violence, as well as fight for immigrants and abortion rights. She said she would also take on President Donald Trump — “the White House is an affront to our democracy” — and seek to abolish his Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, which she said has improperly detained immigrants. She hasn’t pulled any punches in promising to take on the Republican president: “It’s really all about sweet justice and bringing him down.”
Read Newsday's endorsement of James here.