Rep. Rice withdraws from contention in attorney general race

Rep. Kathleen Rice seen here on March 4

Rep. Kathleen Rice seen here

Barbara Underwood, thrust into the job as NY state's chief legal officer when Eric Schneiderman abruptly resigned amid allegations he abused woman, said Tuesday she won't seek election to the attorney general's positon.

But Maloney said in a statement that he'll forgo that interview, and that he supports the acting attorney general, Barbara Underwood, remaining at that post through the November election.

"I think all that will help me do this job", Underwood said.

Sixteen candidates have lined up to finish out Eric Schneiderman's term through the end of the year as state attorney general, Politico reported.

"The legislature shall appoint", Assemblyman Joseph Lentol said.

Richard Thomas is charged with allegedly siphoning campaign and inaugural committee money, the New York Daily News reports.

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"But we are here, after deeply disturbing allegations that shocked me and many others, and that caused the prior attorney general to resign", Underwood said.

"I won't be distracted as anyone who is going to run would be by the whole process of fundraising and politicking", she said. "We want to interview her and every other person".

The State Legislature on Tuesday was scheduled to begin interviewing more than a dozen candidates to fill the role on an interim basis until December 31, when Schneiderman's term ends. Mike Gianaris and even former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.

Underwood has said she will not run in November. "There's some truth to that, but I can assure you that is not who I am". "Some people joke that the National Association of Attorneys General - NAAG - is also the National Association of Aspiring Governors".

Thomas Abinanti, the next applicant whom the committee considered Tuesday, joked that the room had already cleared out, and that the state "could do a lot worse" than Underwood. Schneiderman himself won over the office in 2010 only when Andrew Cuomo left to run for governor.

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