New York Attorney General Letitia James is running for New York governor.
James is stepping up to the plate two months after an investigation she led into former Gov. Andrew Cuomo that found that he had sexually harassed multiple women — which led to his resignation.
“I’ve spent my career guided by a simple principle: stand up to the powerful on behalf of the vulnerable,” James, 63, said in an announcement video.
James said her investigation had found Cuomo engaged in “unwanted groping, kisses, hugging, and making inappropriate comments” with both current and former New York state employees.
She added that the actions “created a hostile work environment for women,” and also stated that the governor and his senior staff took actions to retaliate against at least one former employee who came forward with her story.
“This is a sad day for New York because independent investigators have concluded that Governor Cuomo sexually harassed multiple women and, in doing so, broke the law,” James said in a statement at the time.
Cuomo has denied intentionally acting inappropriately. This past week, he was accused of forcible touching, a misdemeanor, and is reportedly expected to be arraigned next month.
In addition to leading the investigation into Cuomo, James’ office has also been leading a three-year civil probe into the Trump Organization and is also assisting the Manhattan district attorney in a criminal investigation of Donald Trump‘s company.
Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul assumed the governorship immediately after Cuomo’s resignation. She revealed in August that she would seek reelection once she serves the remainder of Cuomo’s term. Hochul, 63, became New York’s first female governor when Cuomo left office.
James, a Democrat, had previously dismissed any future plans to run, informing reporters in August: “My focus is on my work in the office of the New York State Attorney General. I enjoy serving in the office of the New York State Attorney General and it’s entirely up to the people of the state of New York.”
James worked as a public defender early in her career, and was elected attorney general in November 2018. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. If Letitia James is elected, she would be the first black female governor of any state.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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