Hillary Clinton’s secretary of state nomination has left New York Democrats jockeying for her New York senate seat—and gives Gov. David Paterson a little personal political leverage. Though he hasn’t indicated whom he will appoint, the Washington Post lists some key factors and candidates:
- There is pressure to replace Clinton with a woman. Strong candidates include Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a Clinton-esque centrist, and Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand, a more conservative “blue dog” from Albany.
- Picking a Latino candidate would shore up support for Paterson’s own re-election. Rep. Nydia Velazquez and Adolfo Carrion, the Bronx borough president, are contenders.
- Selecting someone from upstate New York would give Paterson a re-election boost, too; likely candidates include Gillibrand, Rep. Brian Higgins and Buffalo mayor Byron Brown.
- The appointee will probably have to run for re-election in 2010 and again in 2012, so must be a strong fundraiser. That suggests Attorney General Andrew Cuomo; if Paterson chose him he’d have the added bonus of removing a potential gubernatorial rival.