NYC Dem Public Advocate Candidates Slam de Blasio’s Tenure as Mayor, Don’t Think He Should Run for President

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio / Getty Images

None of New York City's public advocate candidates present at a debate on Wednesday thought Mayor Bill de Blasio (D.) should run for president.

Despite having other disagreements, the seven candidates all shared the same view of a potential presidential campaign by the mayor, the New York Daily News reported. Public advocate is second in line to the mayoralty.

"No, he is not qualified to run for president. He should not be running for president," Democratic Assemblyman Michael Blake said.

"I think he’s completely delusional," Democratic Assemblyman Ron Kim said. "He should apologize to New York City first for the last six-and-a-half years, and then maybe, maybe, if he does something positive for the next two years, next year, maybe we can think about him possibly running for mayor. But at this point, come back to us, mayor. We need you here."

Councilman Jumaane Williams was only willing to concede that de Blasio is "legally qualified" to run.

"If you can’t get home fixed, if you can’t deal with the issues of housing and policing, I am very concerned that you are now running for president of the United States of America. I will say he is legally qualified," Williams said.

Lawyer Dawn Smalls said de Blasio was free to run but he wouldn't have her support.

"I think the mayor is more than welcome to put his hat in. He would not be my candidate for president," she said.

Activist Nomiki Konst slammed de Blasio's management of the city's Housing Authority before similarly conceding only that he is legally qualified.

"The mayor may qualify to run for president. I’m not sure he’s qualified to run for president," former Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito added.

Councilman Rafael Espinal said de Blasio "should finally focus on New York City," and that "a lot of his initiatives have been failing us."

The candidates face off next Tuesday in a special election, which was triggered by Letitia James's successful campaign for New York attorney general.

De Blasio has said he is not ruling out a run for president in 2020 and suggested he wants to move the Democratic Party further to the left.