Zephyr Teachout running for New York AG
Law professor Zephyr Teachout launched a campaign for New York attorney general on Monday, looking to claim the post after losing a race for it to now-outgoing Attorney General Letitia James (D) in 2018.
Teachout, a progressive who has also mounted unsuccessful bids for governor and the House, told the Times Union last month that she would run for attorney general if James ultimately decided to make a bid for New York governor.
James, who beat Teachout, 50, and two other Democrats in 2018 for her party’s nomination, announced last month that she is running for governor, opening the lane for Teachout to run for the state’s chief law officer.
On her campaign website, Teachout said, “New Yorkers deserve an Attorney General who will stand up for climate justice, root out corruption and corporate abuse, stand with workers and defend civil rights.”
She said her top priorities if elected to the post would be rooting out corruption in Albany and demanding transparency for New Yorkers, in addition to putting an end to wage theft, tax fraud, unsafe working conditions and corporate consolidation.
Teachout also said she will focus on protecting “basic civil rights” for New Yorkers, including the right to vote, and safeguarding the environment by holding polluters accountable and protecting individuals from unsafe water, housing and climate damage.
“Zephyr understands how to use our legal system to fight for justice and people’s needs, not as a tool to enforce a status quo that benefits the few,” her campaign website reads.
Teachout came in second place in the 2018 Democratic primary race for attorney general, raking in 31.2 percent of the vote, roughly 9 percentage points behind James’s 40.5 percent. Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) trailed Teachout with 25 percent, followed by Verizon Executive Leecia Eve.
She also ran an unsuccessful campaign for New York governor in 2014, losing the primary race to Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D).
Cuomo resigned in August amid accusations of sexual harassment and a damning report on those claims from James’s office. His replacement, former Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul (D), will face James in a primary next year.
Teachout ran for the House in 2016, looking to replace outgoing Republican Rep. Chris Gibson (N.Y.). She won the Democratic nomination, but ultimately lost to former Rep. John Faso (R).
Teachout is a professor at Fordham Law School. Her website says she will be “running a people-powered, grassroots campaign.”