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Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

Democrats are so convinced that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo could be considered for Joe Biden's attorney general that aides at the National Governors Association, which Cuomo chairs, are looking into contingencies for replacing him, two sources familiar with the situation tell Axios.

What we're hearing: Some Democratic donors in Cuomo's orbit tell Axios that the governor is being pushed for the job and that Biden would consider him, based on their long friendship.

Why it matters: The AG would be among the most politically sensitive — and high-profile — jobs in a Biden administration.

  • The Justice Department will face pressure to investigate Trump-era officials — and perhaps Trump himself — for wrongdoing in office.
  • Biden's AG also would manage the federal response to police violence, social unrest and systemic racism, and the AG could seek to use federal powers to blunt state abortion restrictions.

What they're saying: Cuomo's team denies that the governor has any interest in serving in a potential Biden Cabinet.

  • "100% he's made zero outreach, has had zero conversations about this and has made his desire to stay in New York clear as day and be governor as long as people want him," Cuomo's senior adviser Richard Azzopardi tells Axios.

Between the lines: Biden is clearly fond of Cuomo, but he's also committed — and under pressure — to name a racially and gender-diverse Cabinet, including the marquee posts.

  • Names like former acting AG Sally Yates and Stacey Abrams are also likely on a list of AG candidates.

The big picture: Cuomo, who previously served as New York's AG, has a long history with Biden.

  • Through his late father Mario, Cuomo's known Biden since the 1980s. The two grew closer during the Hurricane Sandy reconstruction efforts and Cuomo's time serving in Bill Clinton's Cabinet as secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
  • People who know their relationship say Biden sees parts of himself in the 62-year-old.
  • "When one of them needs something, it’s automatic,” says a person familiar with their relationship. “It’s not a calculation.”

Go deeper

Updated Jan 7, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden finalizes full slate of Cabinet secretaries

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President-elect Joe Biden has officially finalized his picks for Cabinet secretaries, naming 10 men and 5 women to lead federal agencies in an administration he has pledged will "look like America."

Driving the news: Biden filled out his Cabinet on Thursday by nominating Judge Merrick Garland to be attorney general, Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo to lead the Commerce Department, and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh to lead the Labor Department.

Updated 2 hours ago - World

Myanmar's deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi sentenced to 4 years in prison

An anti-coup protest in Yangon, Myanmar.Photo: Hkun Lat/Getty Images

A Myanmar court sentenced the country's ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, on Monday to four years in prison on charges of "inciting public unrest" and breaking COVID-19 protocols, per the New York Times.

Why it matters: It's the first of several verdicts that could result in the 76-year-old Nobel laureate being imprisoned for the rest of her life. The 11 charges she faces have been widely criticised as politically motivated.

5 hours ago - World

Pope Francis denounces European governments' migrant response

Pope Francis adresses refugees at the Reception and Identification Centre (RIC) in Mytilene on the island of Lesbos on Sunday. Photo: Louisa Gouliamaki/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Pope Francis criticized European countries' response to migrants and asylum seekers during his visit to a refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos Sunday.

Why it matters: The pope said "migration is a humanitarian crisis that concerns everyone," but little had changed in the global response to displaced peoples since his first visit to Lesbos five years ago, per a transcript of his remarks. "Human lives, real people, are at stake. ... let us stop this shipwreck of civilization!"