New York State

Editor’s note: Reflecting on coverage of the AG investigation

How ambition is discussed and defined, depending who has it.

City & State Editor in Chief Ralph Ortega

City & State Editor in Chief Ralph Ortega Ralph Ortega

Here at City & State, our editorial team picked up on how Attorney General Letitia James is in the same position Andrew Cuomo was 13 years ago when he held the office and investigated then-Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s fall from grace. Now that Cuomo’s the one being investigated for alleged sexual misconduct in an independent probe overseen by James, we wondered if history will repeat itself. 

Will James follow the same path to the governor’s office? Some political experts say it’s a likely possibility, even though she hasn’t officially indicated any interest in running to be New York state’s top executive, writes Amanda Luz Henning Santiago in this week’s cover story.

Meanwhile, others who have worked with James have insisted that she’s not trying to parlay the AG’s office into a run for governor, but just trying to do her job. Being attorney general does put James in charge of the biggest investigations in the state. 

Oftentimes, women of color, especially Black women, are seen as being criticized by the media for being ambitious, and that’s a major concern within the diverse communities City & State covers. Henning Santiago’s story illustrates that ambition is a core aspect of New York politics, and the ambition of white male politicians is sometimes viewed in a more positive light. We recognize that James has her work cut out for her at the moment with this investigation.

The future will tell if City & State’s wonderings were right.