Some NYC Mayoral Thoughts
Recent discussions about NYC Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly running on the Republican line for mayor in 2013 to succeed Mayor Michael Bloomberg is wishful thinking.
Bloomberg barely won a third term spending over $160 million to overcome a citywide five to one Democrat versus Republican voter registration advantage. Any other GOP candidate running for Mayor in 2013 without the financial means like Bloomberg has to overcome this obstacle is a sure bet to lose.
Democrats occupy the offices of Comptroller, Public Advocate, Council Speaker, 46 of 51 Council seats, four of five Borough President offices and four of five District Attorney offices. Bloomberg’s narrow 2009 victory was assisted by numerous Democratic elected officials who crossed party lines to endorse Bloomberg or stay officially neutral. Democrats are going to support one of their own to end the GOP’s 20-year control of City Hall.
Those who assisted Bloomberg in 2009 by actually endorsing fellow Democrat Bill Thompson for mayor and then sitting on their hands and going through the motions by nominally campaigning for him will not do the same in 2013. Yesterday’s old friends of Bloomberg have become strangers, having no incentive to help him groom a successor.
Democrats will all rally around their own party’s nominee for mayor in 2013. They want a friend in City Hall when running for re-election in 2014.
Bloomberg abandoned the Republican
Party whose ballot line he “rented” for convenience in winning a third term. He has continued his past track record of doing little to help finance and run serious Republican challengers against incumbent Democrats.
Bloomberg’s 2009 reelection strategy was deliberate in not spending any significant time campaigning or fundraising for GOP challengers. He didn’t want to increase turnout of registered Democrats or offend incumbent Democrat Party public officials. As a result, he has virtually no GOP allies in City Hall.
The last effective GOP challenger for City Comptroller was businessperson Richard Bernstein, who ran with former Mayor Ed Koch in 1981.
This also applies to former Brooklyn Democratic Assemblymember Jules Polenetsky who ran for Public Advocate with former Mayor Rudy Giuliani in 1997. The last Republican NYC Council president, Sanford Garelick, won in 1969. The last Republican Comptroller was Joseph D. McGoldrick who served from 1938 to 1945.
Crossover Democrats, who voted for former Mayors Giuliani and Bloomberg, continue to move out of town, retire out of state or succumb to old age. There has been no successful GOP outreach to new Caribbean, Hispanic, Asian or other new immigrants along with middle class African Americans.
Once the GOP loses any incumbent, they are rarely able to reclaim the district. Bloomberg may go down in the history books as the last Big Apple Republican Mayor.