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Aidala flattered to be included in conversation for next U.S. Attorney for Eastern District of New York

March 2, 2017 By Rob Abruzzese, Legal Editor Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Arthur Aidala was an energetic leader during his year as president of the Brooklyn Bar Association, during which he had the organization’s board room renovated, took members on a trip to Cuba and had U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito come speak at the Bar Association. Now he’s seeking public office and is rumored to be up for the job of U.S. Attorney of the Eastern District. Eagle photo by Rob Abruzzese

Since President Donald Trump’s inauguration, the eyes of the Brooklyn legal community have been on U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District Robert Capers as he is likely to be replaced any day now by the new administration. Among the names rumored to be up for the positions is Arthur Aidala, the immediate past president of the Brooklyn Bar Association.

“I’m flattered to even be in the conversation for such a prestigious position that helps keep America safe,” Aidala said. “There are many quality people [who have been rumored to be up for the job] and I am truly humbled to even be a part of that conversation. It would be the honor of a lifetime to be able to serve my fellow citizens in such a capacity.”

Aidala was mentioned alongside Todd Harrison, James McGovern and Marc Mukasey in the New York Law Journal on Tuesday as names that the administration could be considering for the job.

Typically, the person who fills the job is nominated by the senior senator from New York, in this case Chuck Schumer, and that may still be the case. But speculation is that Trump could rely on a Republican like Rudolph Giuliani, a former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, for advice on who should fill this position.

If Giuliani picks, he could lean toward Mukasey, whom he has a relationship with, and has more experience in the federal courts as a former supervisory federal prosecutor with the Securities Exchange Commission. However, Giuliani has a relationship with Aidala as well and he even appeared at his charity golf outing for the Brooklyn Bar Association in 2016.

Harrison also has experience in the Eastern District as he worked in the U.S. Attorney’s Office there from 2002 to 2008.

Aidala would not confirm or deny to the Brooklyn Eagle that he had been approached for the job, as the Law Journal reported. In the past, he has expressed interest for the Brooklyn District Attorney job and called it his “dream job,” but he has also expressed support for acting District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, who is expected to run for the position. Aidala has also suggested that he is interested in running for New York attorney general.

Michael Farkas, immediate past president of the Kings County Criminal Bar Association, had previously expressed support for Aidala as the next Brooklyn DA, and thinks that this job could be a good fit for Aidala as well.

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“To my mind, becoming the U.S. attorney would be just as much, if not more, of a dream as becoming the district attorney,” Farkas said. “For any criminal lawyer who practices in Federal Court, the prospect of becoming the U.S. attorney is undoubtedly thrilling. Most would consider it the pinnacle of a career.”

Aidala started an exploratory committee in December of 2016 called “Aidala for New York.” He was able to raise more than $250,000 at a fundraiser in January, but never decided on which office he would run for, despite suggestions that he was interested in both the Brooklyn DA position and the statewide attorney general job. Aidala gave credit to President Trump for inspiration to get more involved politically.

“I can’t lie, President Trump had something to do with it,” Aidala said in December when he first stated that he would seek public office. “Before him, you really couldn’t, or at least you felt like you had to be a lifelong politician. Look at Mayor [Bill] de Blasio. He’s been in politics for 40 years … Hillary Clinton has been in politics for 50 years. I haven’t been in politics. I’ve been around it, but I haven’t been in it. I’m not a community organizer, I’m just a guy from Brooklyn who loves his community.”

 

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