Suozzi: Gov. Hochul ‘disqualified herself’ from appointing a new lieutenant governor following Benjamin resignation

Publication: New York Daily News
By: Denis Slattery

ALBANY — Gov. Hochul “doesn’t have the ethical standing” to name a replacement for her recently indicted former lieutenant governor, according to Rep. Tom Suozzi.

The Long Island Democrat argued Tuesday that the governor should be barred from picking a new second-in-command in the wake of Brian Benjamin’s resignation and arrest on federal corruption charges last week.

“Kathy Hochul has disqualified herself from appointing a new lieutenant governor,” Suozzi said during a Zoom news conference. “She knew when she chose her first LG that he had ethical issues. But she put her own political considerations ahead of good, sound judgment.”

Suozzi, facing off against Hochul in the June 28 Democratic primary, said the vetting process that failed to flag Benjamin’s alleged misdeeds reflects the governor’s lack of leadership.

He suggested Hochul hold off on naming a replacement until at least after the primary.

“She has proven that she cannot handle this, and she needs to let the people decide; they will do a far better job than she has,” he said.