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Thomas Suozzi, a New York state politician who ran for governor in 2006, may be among the top choices to replace Hillary Clinton, should she choose to leave her senate seat to be Barack Obama's secretary of state.
The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza gave Suozzi the best odds for the job:
3-1: Thomas Suozzi. Suozzi is known nationally (to the extent he is known at all) as the guy who ran a quixotic primary challenge against Spitzer in 2006. With two years of hindsight, however, Suozzi, the Nassau County executive, looks better and better. Suozzi's geographic base (Long Island) is appealing for Democrats looking for a statewide winner, and Bill Cunningham, the top political aide to Paterson, is also extremely close to Suozzi.
A 2006 New York Magazine profile of Suozzi contained this brief biography:
On paper, Suozzi seems like a consultant's wish come true. He's a reform-minded Democrat in a largely Democratic state ripe for reform. He's young (43), suburban (born and raised in Glen Cove, Long Island), and a practicing Catholic (check that: pro-choice Catholic). He's got early-Pacino good looks, and a hey-let's-put-on-a-show enthusiasm that makes him the guy you want to talk to, whether it be at a Staten Island potluck or a policy conference in Albany.
And he's got sparkling political credentials. At 30, Suozzi, a lawyer and CPA, returned home to Glen Cove, ran for mayor, and went on to save his beloved town from fiscal disaster. In 2001, he pulled off a colossal upset and was elected Nassau County executive, the first Democrat in three decades to hold that position in the 55 percent Republican county. Once in office, Suozzi eliminated a $45 million deficit that had threatened to balloon to $400 million by 2005 and send the county into bankruptcy. The county's bond rating skyrocketed, and Suozzi was named a Governing magazine "Public Official of the Year."