State Attorney General Letitia James is expected to enter the race for governor, according to sources.
For weeks, James has been weighing her options and traveling throughout the state to gauge support. But in the last two days, she began telling her closest allies and union leaders that she has made a decision to challenge Gov. Kathy Hochul in next June’s Democratic Primary.
“Attorney General Letitia James has made a decision regarding the governor’s race. She will be announcing it in the coming days,” Kimberly Peeler-Allen, a newly hired adviser to the James campaign, said Wednesday evening in a statement.
Sources say that announcement could come as soon as Friday or sometime this weekend.
Peeler-Allen is one of two high-profile hires made by the budding James campaign in recent weeks. The other is Celinda Lake, who served as a pollster for President Joe Biden.
Both women come with significant national experience. Their hiring was first reported by the New York Times.
Shortly after taking over as governor in August, Hochul announced that she intended to run for a full term next year.
The calendar is short, with petitioning to get names on the ballot beginning in early next year and an anticipated Democratic State Convention in February. The primary is set for June 28.
Hochul took over after former Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned in the wake of a bombshell investigation conducted by James’ office that concluded that Cuomo had sexually harassed 11 women.
Other potential Democratic candidates in the race include Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, who on Wednesday formally opened a campaign account, Long Island Rep. Tom Suozzi, and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. Mayor Bill de Blasio has also not ruled out running.