December 8, 2022

Kathy Hochlin’s choice for NY Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin

Albany, New York – Government. Kathy c. Hochul According to one person familiar with the decision, Democrat State Senator Brian A. Schmidt is the second-highest-ranking deputy governor of New York State from Harlem. Benjamin has chosen.

Ms. Hochul, a Democrat from West New York, who became the state’s first female governor on Tuesday, is expected to announce her appointment this weekend.

Mr. Benjamin’s choice, black, Mrs Trying to diversify her ticket When he began his first campaign for governor the following year, he chose a potential running mate to help expand his appeal in the much-vaunted New York City area.

Mr. Benjamin is the senior assistant majority leader in the state Senate, where he has been a voice for criminal justice reforms. He lost for mayor earlier this year, finishing fourth in the crowded Democrats.

Ms. Hochlin’s office declined to comment. Mr. Benjamin, 44, who represents a large part of Upper Manhattan, did not respond to a request for comment.

A lieutenant governor becomes governor when the governor dies, resigns, or is fired. He or she also serves as acting governor when the governor is absent or disabled.

But, the resulting vacancy level The Rise of Mrs. Hochulin Former Governor Andrew M. After Cuomo’s resignation, he has traditionally been given a mostly ceremonial role, handing over some legal duties, other than the method of serving as head of the state senate.

For the past few weeks, Ms. Hochul has been pointing it out She wanted to pick someone from New York City. Ms. Hochul, who is white, approached a handful of city politicians of color, including state senator Jamal Bailey, a rising star in Franks politics; Legislator Rodney Picot, leader of the Brooklyn Democratic Party; And exiting Bronx mayor Ruben Thias Jr..

A graduate of Brown University and Harvard University, Mr. Benjamin Morgan worked at Stanley and before entering politics was an executive partner at Genesis, a real estate company centered on affordable housing.

In 2017, he ran for the state Senate seat vacated by Bill Perkins, who won a seat on the city council. He was elected to the Democratic seat after a convention vote in March Defeat easily His Republican opponent, in the high blue district, took office in June.

As a senator, Mr. Benjamin supported the Rikers’ efforts to close the island and advocated for a number of criminal justice issues, from ending bail and reform to ending isolation and amending parole laws.

He has also issued bills for obtaining banks To exclude Create so-called “from private non-profit prisons.”Rain Day FinanceCan touch New York City in times of financial emergency. Mr. Benjamin Said earlier this year He supported the return of the police movement.

Mr. Michael Blake, former legislator of the Bronx. Benjamin Comptroller endorsed the primary, insisting that he should be recognized not only for his ability and experience, but also for how he could help Ms. Hochsul stand out among his race and black voters.

“I think it’s important to realize that Brian is talented, and he’s black too,” Mr Blake said.

“People always focus on talent even when there is no success,” Mr Blake added. “He ran for mayor – I think he deserves it – lost, but at the end of the day, God had big plans for him.”

The contest for controller was won by Democratic Primary City Council spokeswoman Corey Johnson and Councilman Brad Lander as the party’s left-leaning stalwart. Mr. behind Michelle Caruso-Cabrera. Benjamin finished, A former CNBC presenter who did not win the elected office.

During the primary, Mr. Benjamin’s campaign dropped nearly two dozen donations City Raised questions about their reliability.

Mr. Benjamin does not seem to have gained much traction in the race, perhaps how many votes Ms. from New York City. Hochoul raised questions about whether it could help attract a running partner, especially if the governor faces the primary challenge of a colorful person.

The city’s attorney general, Zumein Williams, said he was actively examining the run for governor and that state Attorney General Lydia James was considered a strong candidate and had given no indication that he wanted to run.

“Brian didn’t run successfully across town, but that doesn’t mean he can’t run successfully at the state level,” said Christina Greer, an associate professor of political science at the University of Fordham. “He has a financial background and can motivate black voters. He translates well in the upcountry.

Mr. Benjamin was a close friend of Democrat leader Keith LT Wright in Manhattan. On Wednesday, Mr. Wright praised Ms. Hochulin’s choice.

“He’s bright, he’s smart and I think he’s a great choice,” he said. Wright said. “I think he’ll roll up his sleeves and go to work.”