Rivals Mock Andrew Yang: 5 Takeaways From the Mayor’s Race

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Andrew Yang made a giant splash final week as he entered the mayor’s race, including a jolt of vitality to a marketing campaign season that has been comparatively staid and well mannered till now.

Different campaigns pounced on Mr. Yang, questioning his authenticity as a New Yorker and his dedication to town. Whereas their digs highlighted a few of his weaknesses, additionally they illustrated how the candidates view Mr. Yang as a risk.

The campaigns additionally released their fund-raising figures final week, displaying which candidates are within the strongest monetary place, whereas a former Wall Avenue govt known for a #MeToo complaint entered the lesser-known Republican discipline.

Listed here are some key developments within the race:

Even earlier than Mr. Yang entered the race, he had already confronted social media ridicule for a comment he made to The New York Occasions explaining his decision to go away New York Metropolis for his weekend residence within the Hudson Valley early within the pandemic.

That was earlier than the bodega incident.

A day after Mr. Yang held an in-person marketing campaign launch in Morningside Heights, he posted a video on Twitter about his love for bodegas — a protected stance that few would problem. However Mr. Yang recorded the video in a spacious, glistening retailer that few New Yorkers would take into account a bodega.

The video introduced Mr. Yang extra ridicule — and three.7 million views by Sunday afternoon.

Rival campaigns took different swipes at him. After Mr. Yang completed a strolling tour of the Brownsville neighborhood in Brooklyn, the marketing campaign of Eric Adams, the Brooklyn borough president, stated: “Eric doesn’t want a tour of Brownsville. He was born there.”

The marketing campaign supervisor for Maya Wiley, a former counsel for Mayor Invoice de Blasio, knocked Mr. Yang’s swerve from the presidential marketing campaign path to the New York mayor’s race: “Maya is operating — not as a backup plan — however as a result of she’s devoted her complete life to bettering, empowering and lifting up New Yorkers.”

Mr. Stringer’s marketing campaign spokesman, Tyrone Stevens, additionally took a dig: “We welcome Andrew Yang to the mayor’s race — and to New York Metropolis.”

The selection of music to accompany a candidate’s official launch or acceptance speech is often a calculated determination. “Don’t Cease” by Fleetwood Mac was Invoice Clinton’s marketing campaign theme music in 1992; Lorde’s “Royals” prefaced Mr. de Blasio’s victory speech in 2013.

Mr. Yang arrived at his launch occasion in Morningside Park in Manhattan dancing to the song “God’s Plan” by Drake, which options the lyrics: “They wishin’ on me/Unhealthy issues.”

Certainly, Mr. Yang confronted a barrage of questions from journalists over why he left town through the pandemic and why he had not voted in local elections. One key query is whether or not Mr. Yang views the job as a steppingstone to run for nationwide workplace once more — like Mr. de Blasio who obtained criticism for his lackluster bid for president in 2019 and several trips to Iowa.

Requested by The New York Occasions if he would decide to not operating for president whereas serving as mayor, Mr. Yang declined to take action. However he stated being mayor of New York can be the job of a lifetime.

“New Yorkers don’t have anything to fret about,” he stated.

Mr. Yang made a suggestion: Town ought to take management of the subway away from the state. There’s just one impediment: Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, who has seized close to complete management of the transit company and isn’t recognized for ceding energy.

“Who is aware of? Perhaps he’ll be blissful to have town take it off his arms,” Mr. Yang advised reporters gathered on a subway platform, who laughed incredulously on the thought.

He spent his first day on the marketing campaign path crossing 4 of town’s 5 boroughs (sorry, Staten Island). On NY1’s “Inside Metropolis Corridor” that night, Mr. Yang disillusioned some by saying town may not be capable of shut the jail at Rikers Island by the yr 2027.

“Rikers Island ought to be closed, however we have to be versatile on the timeline,” he stated.

Mr. Yang touted a key endorsement as he hit the path: Consultant Ritchie Torres of the Bronx, a rising star within the Democratic Social gathering who helped to counter criticism that Mr. Yang was out of contact with town.

Mr. Torres and Mondaire Jones are the primary openly gay Black men to serve in Congress, and Mr. Torres was being courted by a number of campaigns. He had met or had conversations with Ms. Wiley, Mr. Adams, Mr. Stringer, Raymond J. McGuire and Shaun Donovan, a former housing secretary underneath President Barack Obama.

Mr. Torres stated he gave the shedding campaigns a heads-up about his determination even whereas he was engrossed with the vote to question President Trump.

“No mayoral candidate endorsed me in my race,” Mr. Torres stated. “I didn’t owe anybody something.”

Mr. Torres stated Mr. Yang’s endorsement of a universal basic income can be a victory for the South Bronx district he represents, one of many poorest within the nation. He stated that he additionally likes the truth that Mr. Yang is just not part of town’s political institution.

The endorsement permits Mr. Torres to align himself with a fellow average progressive. If Mr. Yang wins, it might increase Mr. Torres’s standing whereas giving him a strong ally in Metropolis Corridor.

Requested concerning the response to his determination, Mr. Torres stated: “Eric Adams was gracious, most had been disillusioned and one marketing campaign particularly was hostile.”

A number of individuals who had been accustomed to the discussions stated that the McGuire marketing campaign was the one which responded with hostility. Mr. Torres met with Mr. McGuire, a former Wall Avenue govt, at an occasion within the Hamptons over the summer season, and his marketing campaign believed it had the within observe.

Mr. McGuire’s marketing campaign denied being upset concerning the snub.

“Ray is just not a politician and doesn’t maintain grudges,” his spokeswoman, Lupé Todd-Medina, stated. “He seems ahead to working with the congressman when he’s mayor.”

Many officers who’ve labored in and round metropolis authorities assume extremely of Kathryn Garcia, town’s former sanitation commissioner, who’s operating as a confirmed supervisor able to main town’s restoration from the pandemic. However she is falling behind within the cash race.

Ms. Garcia has raised about $300,000 and did not qualify for public matching funds.

Nonetheless, the current filings revealed that Ms. Garcia obtained marketing campaign donations from a lot of high-powered New Yorkers, together with Joseph J. Lhota, the previous head of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority who ran as Republican in opposition to Mr. de Blasio in 2013; Polly Trottenberg, town’s former transportation commissioner; and Kathryn Wylde, the chief of a distinguished enterprise group. Ms. Wylde additionally donated to Mr. McGuire, who’s a favourite amongst Wall Avenue donors.

Monika Hansen, Ms. Garcia’s marketing campaign supervisor, stated that many metropolis staff again her bid.

“Kathryn has the assist of the doers in New York Metropolis authorities at each rank,” she stated.

A lesser-known candidate, Zachary Iscol, a nonprofit chief and former Marine, has raised practically $750,000 and stated he expects to qualify for matching funds quickly.

One other candidate who labored in Mr. de Blasio’s administration is struggling: Loree Sutton, a former veteran affairs commissioner who has $398 readily available and $6,000 in excellent liabilities. She stated her marketing campaign has skilled some bumps however that she is reorganizing and “is on this race and in it to win it.”

The Democratic major in June is predicted to determine the mayor’s race, with registered Democrats far outnumbering Republicans in New York Metropolis. However there may be additionally a Republican major in June, and a brand new candidate entered the race final week: Sara Tirschwell, a former Wall Avenue govt who as soon as filed a #MeToo complaint in opposition to her boss.

In an interview, Ms. Tirschwell touted her expertise as a single mother and a average Republican with liberal social views. She highlighted her “managerial competence” as a uncommon girl who rose to excessive positions at monetary companies.

“I feel there’s a want for a average on this race, and it’s not clear {that a} average goes to outlive a Democratic major in New York Metropolis,” she stated.

Ms. Tirschwell, who grew up in Texas, echoed the complaints of many Republicans — and some Democrats — that “Invoice de Blasio might be the worst mayor in our lifetime.” However she didn’t wish to focus on the current violence in Washington or Mr. Trump’s impeachment.

“This race is about New York, and it’s about New Yorkers and the disaster that this metropolis faces, and that’s what my marketing campaign is concentrated on,” she stated.

Different names which have been floated within the Republican major: John Catsimatidis, the billionaire proprietor of the Gristedes grocery retailer chain; Fernando Mateo, an advocate for livery cabdrivers who was linked to a scandal over Mr. de Blasio’s fund-raising; and Curtis Sliwa, the founding father of the Guardian Angels.