Brooklyn U.S. Attorney nominee Loretta Lynch turned down an offer by then-state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer to join him on the Democratic ticket for governor, The New York Post reported Sunday.
President Barack Obama nominated Lynch in January to be the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. She previously held the post from 1999 to 2001.
According to the NY Post, in late 2005 Spitzer spent a month calling leaders across the state in the hopes of convincing them to join his ticket. The four people considered the best candidates were all black women, The Post reported.
Spitzer decided against Leecia Eve, a former senior policy adviser to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, for lieutenant governor slot, the newspaper reports. His aides then compiled a list of three other options that included Lynch, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute president Shirley Ann Jackson and former CNBC CEO Pamela Thomas-Graham. All three women turned him down, according to The Post.
Spitzer ultimately selected then-state Senate Minority Leader David Paterson — against his aides’ advice — who became the governor of New York after Spitzer resigned in March 2008. According to the newspaper, Paterson “wasn’t on any list, let alone the short list” and Spitzer’s aides barely vetted Paterson before adding him to the ticket.
Lynch declined comment to the NY Post. At the time she was approached by Spitzer, Lynch was a partner at Hogan & Hartson LLP in New York, a position she had held since January 2002. Before that, Lynch had worked in the U.S. Attorney’s office since 1990, serving as in various positions including Deputy Chief of General Crimes and an Assistant U.S. Attorney. Read her full bio here.