Rep. Weiner: Decide on Mayoral Race in June
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Democratic congressman Anthony Weiner says he'll decide in June whether he will run for mayor. Weiner, who represents parts of Queens an
Brooklyn, said in a letter to supporters that the nation's economic crisis 'is a time for problem solving' in Washington. He said he'll decide during the Congressional summer break, quote, 'the best political course.' A potential Democratic rival -- City Comptroller Bill Thompson -- already has hired a campaign manager. Mayor Bloomberg also has hired staff for his re-election bid.
Letter from Anthony Weiner to his supporters:
I’m writing to say thank you and to update you on my thoughts about moving forward.
With your help our campaign has raised the maximum we are permitted to spend in the primary. Every public poll shows me leading the Democratic race and closing the gap on Mayor Bloomberg.
Some pundits and reporters have asked whether or not I was committed to waging this campaign, so I wanted to tell you my thinking directly.
Every day I am thinking about how I can help our city in these remarkably challenging times. That is why I fought so hard to make sure that the stimulus package had so much good news for New York and all those in the middle class and those struggling to make it. That’s why this week, as part of the Democratic leadership team, I am hard at work making sure that President Obama's first budget gets passed with a strong emphasis on helping urban areas like ours.
Simply put: I’m doing my job.
Over the next months, the task of lifting our nation and our city out of the worst economic turmoil in 70 years will be – and I hope agree, should be - my top priority.
So you won’t see me holding campaign rallies. You won’t see me knocking on doors asking for votes.
There is a time for politics, but this is a time for problem solving. And boy do we have a lot of problems to solve in Washington today.
At the beginning of the summer when Congress takes a break, I will look at the lay of the land again and try to determine the best political course.
But I will be guided by the same principles that have directed me for my whole career. How can I help ensure that New York remains the capital of the middle class and a City of opportunity for all those trying to make it?
I'm confident in my strategy and timetable for deciding in part because I've been through it before. In 2005, pundits and strategists said I spent too much time talking about policy ideas, too much time doing my job in Congress, not enough time campaigning, and that I lacked too many important insider endorsements. Frankly, I wore those criticisms with pride. I still do.
In the last mayoral election, we did not announce our campaign for mayor until August 3rd. I then spoke frankly to New Yorkers about the real problems we face, and told them my vision for our City. That approach – real answers to real problems – worked. The night of the Democratic primary ended in a run-off, but I decided that the right thing to do was step aside so Mr. Ferrer could run in the general election.
I look forward to talking to you more as we go forward. Together, I believe we can build a different kind of government that responds to this crisis, and wins elections not by divisions or tactics, but by offering real solutions. I’ve already proposed some of these solutions in a book called Keys to the City, which you can find at www.keystothecity.org.
My convictions remain the same. I don't believe in the orthodoxy of endless campaigns, ignoring your day job, or telling easy fictions no matter the circumstance.
I do believe in listening to each other, finding common experiences across the diverse citizens of the City, and rolling up our sleeves and getting to work. If we want real solutions, we must fight to build a better City, and do what we believe is right. Over the next months I'll speak at forums when I can and on important issues when possible. I'll fight for what I believe and, when the time comes, I’ll be ready for a tough campaign.
I deeply appreciate your support, and I look forward to talking with you in the months ahead.