October 29, 2018

New York Post

New York needs an attorney general who is focused on New York — and especially on the state’s massive corruption. For that reason, The Post endorses Keith Wofford for the job.

The Harvard-educated lawyer warns, “The cost of corruption is killing us by undercutting the confidence of taxpayers and businesses. It’s driving out jobs and business.”

His opponent, Tish James, has said little about the pay-to-play scandals that have engulfed the Cuomo administration, with several of the gov’s closest associates headed to prison.

Then again, she’s Gov. Cuomo’s candidate. He backed her early on, and is rumored to have enticed Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney into the Democratic primary to split the vote and block reformer Zephyr Teachout.

And her vision for the job is to target . . . President Trump. Huh? As Wofford notes, “Your job as attorney general is not to be the political resistance.”

Corruption isn’t his only issue. He’s passionate about criminal justice, especially reforming the state’s discovery rules to protect the right to a speedy trial so that defendants don’t languish on Rikers for years.

But the “corruption tax” is a big issue. A Buffalo native, he’s furious that Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion has done so little, since “public officials rigged up all the contracts.” As AG, he’d vet big-money state contracts for signs of fraud before the deals get signed.

James, a talented politician with a huge natural advantage in this strongly Democratic state, has ducked debates with her opponent. Too bad: The race is making history as New York’s first statewide contest between African-American candidates.

It could make even more history by installing Wofford as the “people’s lawyer” to begin a long-overdue cleaning of the Albany cesspool.