News & Politics

Weiner Suddenly Not So Hot to Declare for Mayor


Just a month ago, Anthony Weiner toured the five boroughs and said, “there’s a conversation we need to have in the city… and I’m going to be leading that conversation.” He’s been raising money for a mayoral campaign. So you may be forgiven for thinking Weiner is running for mayor.

But not quite, apparently, and not yet: Weiner said yesterday in a letter to supporters that “you won’t see me holding campaign rallies. You won’t see me knocking on doors asking for votes,” and that he would postpone make a decison about running for mayor till May.

It’s not the first ambivalence he’s shown in this race. Last month, as Tom Robbins noticed, even during a blistering anti-Bloomberg peroration, Weiner said “the correct time to campaign against the Mayor is not now.” March isn’t the correct time, either, apparently:

His official excuse: too busy in Congress. “There is a time for politics,” he wrote, “but this is a time for problem solving. And boy, do we have a lot of problems to solve in Washington today.”

Unless there’s some scandal that we don’t know about yet (was there more to his problem with foreign models than met the eye?), we have to assume this is tactics. But to what end? Possibly Weiner wants to leave the Mayor (and his other opponents) hanging out there during what promises to be a few months full of bad economic news for the city, and after they’ve made several ridiculous statements while citizens’ fears for their livelihoods grow, Weiner can step up and say, “I’ve been working hard in Washington to help save your future.”

Other possibilities: he’s looking at the polling numbers and thinking maybe this isn’t the fight for him. He’s going to do a Brave-and-the-Bold team-up with Bloomberg to squeeze Paterson for stimulus money for the city. Obama is offering him a job. The Lord appeared to him in a dream and said he should build an ark.

Ah, big deal. We’re voting for this guy anyway.

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