Taxi and bodega advocate Mateo eyes run for NYC mayor
An advocate for New York Metropolis taxi drivers and bodega house owners is eyeing a run for the Republican nomination for mayor, The Submit has discovered.
Fernando Mateo, who was born within the Dominican Republic and has lengthy headed the state Federation of Taxi Drivers and extra lately the Bodegas Affiliation of America, has deep ties to town’s Latino and immigrant communities.
“I’ve been requested to think about operating for mayor. It’s one thing I’m contemplating given the situation town is in,” he mentioned throughout a Sunday interview.
Mateo mentioned he believes the Huge Apple is heading within the incorrect path and complained that too most of the present candidates operating for mayor are lifelong politicians who don’t perceive the day-to-day struggles of working New Yorkers — notably those that are small enterprise retailers and their staff.
“We want somebody who has out-of-the-box experiences. We don’t need one other mayor for 4 or eight years who acts like Invoice de Blasio,” mentioned Mateo.
“The Democratic Social gathering has misplaced contact with what New York Metropolis is.”
Mateo, 62, who described himself as an “city Republican,” griped that some violent crimes have risen in the course of the coronavirus pandemic, and accused New York’s Democratic Social gathering institution of leaning too far left, aiding criminals as a substitute of law-abiding residents and victims.
“Crime is a large difficulty. There is no such thing as a public security. They’ve legalized crime in our metropolis,” Mateo mentioned.
“You possibly can’t welcome individuals to this metropolis if it’s not protected. We have now police being spat at.”
A Mayor Mateo mentioned he would push to extend the variety of cops within the police division, not intestine or “defund” the NYPD.
In his advocacy roles, Mateo has fought to get extra safety for drivers and retailers who’ve been preyed on by criminals.
He at the moment helps run his spouse’s restaurant on the Grand Concourse in The Bronx.
Mateo blasted New York leaders for suspending indoor eating when authorities stats present the coronavirus an infection price within the metropolis’s eateries is only one.4 %.
“Indoor eating ought to have by no means closed. Give me a break!” he mentioned.
Mateo additionally mentioned he would work to maintain rich taxpayers within the metropolis, not run them out with tax hikes.
Bronx Republican Social gathering chairman Anthony Rendino mentioned he moved to recruit Mateo to run after outgoing Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., a Democrat, determined to not run for Metropolis Corridor.
“The Bronx feels overlooked by the Democratic Social gathering,” Rendino mentioned.
Mateo confirmed that he’s spoken with a number of Republican county leaders within the metropolis about throwing his hat within the ring within the race for Metropolis Corridor.
Different Republicans operating are billionaire mogul John Catsimatidis and Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa.
Mateo acknowledged that he would probably determine to not run for mayor if Catsimatidis, who ran in 2013, throws his hat within the ring. Catsimatidis is now thought of inside GOP circles as probably the most highly effective pressure within the social gathering. He can self-finance a marketing campaign along with his personal fortune and his daughter, Andrea, is the pinnacle of the Manhattan Republican Social gathering.
“Catsimatidis is a legend,” mentioned Mateo.
Mateo will not be with out baggage. His title surfaced in de Blasio’s pay-to-play fundraising scandal, hitting up buddies to lift funds for the mayor’s shuttered not-for-profit group. Mateo was not charged with any crime.
He insisted he didn’t do something incorrect and claimed he was a sufferer.
“The mayor known as up and mentioned he was determined for cash. I helped him. I’m a sufferer of this administration,” Mateo insisted.
The large area of Democratic candidates operating embrace metropolis Comptroller Scott Stringer, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, former de Blasio administration officers Maya Wiley, Kathryn Garcia and Loree Sutton; former federal and metropolis housing director Shaun Donovan, former not-for-profit social service director Diane Morales, and Brooklyn Councilman Carlos Menchaca, amongst others.
Former presidential candidate Andrew Yang and Staten Island Rep. Max Rose, who misplaced his re-election bid to Republican Congresswoman-elect Nicole Malliotakis, have additionally expressed curiosity.
#Taxi #bodega #advocate #Mateo #eyes #run #NYC #mayor