A former New York mayoral candidate who is pondering another run for the city’s top office is holding off making a formal announcement because of Hillary Clinton.
“If Hillary runs, I won’t,” John Catsimatidis told The Real Deal on Saturday.
Catsimatidis, who lost his bid for mayor in the 2013 Republican primary, is CEO of the Red Apple Group, a real estate, energy, finance and insurance conglomerate that also owns the Gristedes Foods supermarket chain.
After news broke earlier this month that Clinton was reportedly mulling a run for mayor, her confidante Neera Tanden told CNN, “I don’t expect her to ever run for any elective office again.”
Catsimatidis disagrees, based on personal conversations he said he had with the former Democratic presidential nominee.
“I spoke to her about it, but she didn’t indicate or signal to me (whether she would run),” he said. “She didn’t say never, she didn’t say no. In my personal opinion, it’s 50-50.”
Catsimatidis was a member of Clinton’s finance team during her first presidential run in 2008 and donated to her 2016 campaign. He also gave $50,000 to Trump’s campaign last year.
Clinton, who moved to Chappaqua, New York, in 1999 to run for U.S. Senate, would be eligible to run for mayor if she becomes a city resident by the Nov. 7 election.
Current Mayor and Democrat Bill de Blasio previously declared he will seek reelection. De Blasio was Clinton's campaign manager in her successful 2000 bid for U.S. Senate from New York. He endorsed her for president in October 2015, six months after she entered the primary.
Real estate developer Paul J. Massey has raised more than $1.6 million and put in more than $1 million of his own to run on the Republican ticket, the Times reported earlier this month.