BACKGROUND: Sussman, 64, is a longtime civil rights lawyer from Orange County. He says he left a lifetime as a enrolled Democrat to join the liberal Green Party so he wouldn’t be beholden to political bosses and so he could investigate corruption in both major parties. In 2002, he was barred from practice for a year by the state Appellate Division which found he had deposited clients’ checks in the operating account of the firm, rather than an escrow account. All clients, however, received money owed to them, he said.
ISSUES: He said he would strengthen the office’s Public Integrity Unit to take on Albany’s “pay-to-play culture” by prosecuting public officers who take campaign contributions for personal and political gain. He also said he would support laws to further limit the amount of money that donors can contribute to politicians’ campaigns and political parties. As an attorney in Goshen, he said he has taken on fossil fuel companies to enforce environmental protections and was one of the architects of the desegregation effort in Yonkers schools. He said he would also fight the Trump administration’s hard-line policies on immigration that have separated families. He said his four decades in courtrooms gives him more litigation experience than all the other candidates for attorney general combined.