After teasing his plans earlier this week, former New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is officially running for Congress.
De Blasio announced on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” Friday that he is running in the Democratic primary for a newly drawn congressional district representing parts of Manhattan and Brooklyn.
“Polls show people are hurting. They need help, they need help fast, and they need leaders who could actually get them help now and know how to do it,” the failed 2020 presidential candidate said.
“I do know how to do it from years of serving the people of this city, and so today I’m declaring my candidacy for Congress in the 10th Congressional District of New York,” he continued. “And I want to tell you, what people need is exactly the kinds of things that I focused on before: money back in their pocket. We did that. We reduced income inequality.”
De Blasio declared his candidacy days after the New York Post reported that he was making calls to party officials and inquiring about launching a challenge to former Rep. Max Rose (D-N.Y.). On Wednesday, he tweeted that he had formed an exploratory committee for the new 10th Congressional District of New York, which represents the East Village, West Village, SoHo, Tribeca, the Financial District, Brooklyn Heights, Park Slope, and Borough Park.
Court-appointed special master John Cervas drew a new map of New York’s congressional districts after the state’s highest court ruled that the Democratic-controlled legislature had illegally gerrymandered to reduce the number of competitive districts. In the Cervas map, the 10th will be a heavily Democratic district, ensuring that whoever wins the primary will in all likelihood be elected to Congress.
De Blasio served as New York City mayor from 2014 to 2021 and was term-limited from running for mayor again. A far-left progressive and communist sympathizer, he left office in December with high disapproval ratings, rising crime, and a tense relationship with the NYPD. He briefly ran for president in the 2020 Democratic primary but dropped out after receiving zero percent in several straw polls.
On “Morning Joe,” De Blasio took credit for enacting a universal pre-K progam and “having led this city out of the worst of the COVID crisis.”
“I’m ready right now to serve and address the issues that are so deep in communities in Brooklyn and Manhattan and I just wanted to come here, a place that I cherish and with you who’ve been such good friends to tell you this is the next step,” he said. “And I want to serve the people of the community that is my home and that I love.”