De Blasio late again as fat-cat donors already gave to Hochul

Mayor Bill de Blasios hung on to arrive late now costing his potential governor campaign.

De Blasio has recently approached donors to discuss his planned Democratic Primary challenge – only to find out that they have already put their money behind incumbent Governor Kathy Hochul.

The mayor recently had lunch with business moguls John Catsimatidis and Dennis Mehiel – after the duo already held two fundraisers and raised nearly half a million dollars for the state’s first female government.

The former lieutenant governor, Hochul, became New York’s CEO after Andrew Cuomo withdrew under the threat of a lawsuit following a scandal over sexual abuse.

De Blasio requested a lunch meeting with the duo at Smith & Wollensky steakhouse.

Although he has not officially thrown his hat in the ring for a gubernatorial bid in 2022, Hizzoner has expressed interest: he set up a candidate committee and thought how “there are a lot of things to fix in Albany.”

“Mayor de Blasio asked us to have lunch with him to discuss what he will do in the future, after leaving office on January 1. It was about what to do after January,” said Catsimatidis, a billionaire , whose business interests include oil companies, real estate and the supermarket chain Gristedes.

Smith & Wollensky steakhouse
De Blasio requested a lunch meeting with business moguls John Catsimatidis and Dennis Mehiel at Smith & Wollensky steakhouse.
Christopher Sadowski

Catsimatidis, a former mayoral candidate who has described himself as a “Republican liberal”, would not say what advice he gave de Blasio to run for governor – but another source told The Post that he and Mehiel advised against a bid . Donors who contribute and raise so much money for a sitting governor do not do the same for a primary rival.

“It was a cordial and friendly discussion. I have known the man for 35 to 40 years. You know the phrase, “You do not go to bed talking about it the next day.” I do not want to kiss and tell, ”said Catsimatidis.

Mehiel is the head of a corrugated board packaging company that served as chairman of the Battery Park City Authority and was appointed by Cuomo.

The mayor reached out to John Catsimatidis and Dennis Mehiel to try to get their financial support.
The mayor reached out to John Catsimatidis and Dennis Mehiel to try to get their financial support.
AP Photo / Kathy Willens, fil

Catsimatidis and Mehiel are major political donors and philanthropists who have deep ties to Greek-American society.

Catsimatidis’ companies do business before or with the city and state governments. He and his wife, Margo, have contributed more than $ 300,000 to Cuomo’s campaigns for governor and justice minister.

He was also questioned by investigators about a $ 50,000 donation directed to the Putnam Democratic Party at the instigation of de Blasio to help turn the state Senate from Republican to Democratic control in 2014.

Catsimatidis and Mehiel have already raised money for Governor Kathy Hochul.
Catsimatidis and Mehiel have already raised money for Governor Kathy Hochul.
Patrick McMullan

Catsimatidis’ United Metro Energy Corp. has been awarded tens of tens of millions of dollars in urban contracts that provide public authorities with heating oil, bio-blend and bio-heat bulk supplies.

Hochul has raised $ 10 million since August, when she applied to the state election board to run for a full term, and she has $ 11.1 million in cash on hand.

Fat cat lobbyists, real estate magnates and politicians have participated in several fundraisers for her campaign – with ticket prices rising as high as $ 25,000 per year.

That means the Blasio – and Hochul’s official challengers State Attorney and 2022 gubernatorial candidate Letitia James and NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams – probably have a lot of land to settle.

But the public will have to wait until January to find out how much these candidates have, as the election board will not publish updated public finance reports until the new year.

Right now, the Blasios 2020 presidential campaign account has only $ 4,731 left in cash on hand, but is also burdened with a debt / loan balance of $ 67,371.

State Attorney Letitia James
State Attorney Letitia James hired Campaign Director Gabby Seay.
Lev Radin / Sipa USA

The cold shoulder he gets from donors already indicates that he probably will not have much trait for the governor’s race, much less without the power of the mayor’s office.

It’s also a stark contrast to Cuomo’s huge $ 18 million in his campaign fund.

Sources told The Post that the disgraced ex-government is considering a comeback bid for his old state AG post, but the move may prove unlikely after the release of the state House Judiciary Committee’s devastating state court report earlier this week.

The analysis blew Cuomo up by using government resources – employees – to help write, prepare and promote his lucrative $ 5.1 million pandemic-era memoir “American Crisis.”

James and Williams’ campaigns did not respond to an immediate request for comment when asked for updated fundraising figures.

James has also recently hired a new campaign director – Gabby Seay – who was 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers Union’s director of political action. An approval from the key union will be much sought after ahead of the Democratic primary in June.

De Blasio did not respond to a request for comment.


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