Q: Was Hillary Clinton appointed New York’s attorney general?
A: No. That story originated on a website that bills its work as satire.
After New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman resigned this week in the wake of several women accusing him of physical and emotional violence, the state’s solicitor general, Barbara D. Underwood, assumed the role in an acting capacity.
Now, it’s up to state lawmakers to choose an interim replacement for the post — which some believe should be filled by a woman. But former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has not been appointed to the job, as one story claims.
The website Liberty Raise published the May 9 article under the headline “New York Governor Appoints New Permanent Attorney General, And She ALREADY Lost To Trump.” Facebook users rightly flagged that story as false: It was first published on the website Daily World Update, which calls its work satire. (Liberty Raise does not include such a disclaimer.)
The article’s claims rely on a fictitious statement by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo that, in part, reads: “We are excited that Secretary Clinton has agreed to serve in this capacity for the remainder of the term.”
There is no public record of Cuomo ever releasing such a statement, as a search of the governor’s announcements shows.
Plus, the position isn’t even Cuomo’s to fill: According to the state constitution, such vacancies are to be filled by the state Legislature. Voters will then elect an attorney general in November.
The made-up story also claimed that Cuomo said Clinton would continue “Schneiderman’s agenda including the aggressive prosecution of President Trump’s former attorney.” But the investigation into Michael Cohen’s finances and business deals isn’t being handled by the state attorney general’s office — it’s a probe by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.
Editor’s note: FactCheck.org is one of several organizations working with Facebook to debunk false stories flagged by readers on the social media network.
Farrow, Ronan and Jane Mayer. “Four Women Accuse New York’s Attorney General of Physical Abuse.” The New Yorker. 7 May 2018.
“New York Governor Appoints New Permanent Attorney General, And She ALREADY Lost To Trump.” Daily World Update. 9 May 2018.
“New York Governor Appoints New Permanent Attorney General, And She ALREADY Lost To Trump.” Liberty Raise. 9 May 2018.
“Statement From Acting Attorney General Barbara Underwood.” Press release. New York State Attorney General’s Office. 8 May 2018.
Wang, Vivian. “Replacing Schneiderman Is a Big Job. Some Say It’s One for a Woman.” The New York Times. 8 May 2018.