Friends urging ex-Gov. David Paterson to run for office again
Former Gov. David Paterson thought he was just going to dinner with high-powered friends. Instead, Tony James of the Blackstone Group and real-estate magnate Douglas Durst tried to talk him into running for mayor.
“Now I’ll be suspicious of every dinner I’m invited to,” Paterson told me after the gathering at Holy Ground, the new barbecue mecca in Tribeca.
His friends suggested that Paterson run first for public advocate. The job will open up in January if current Public Advocate Tish James wins her election next month, as expected, for state attorney general. A flock of Democrats are said to be lining up for the special election to follow. But Paterson, who ran for public advocate in 1993 (and lost in the primary to Mark Green), said he told them, “I have name recognition already.”
Paterson, who replaced Eliot Spitzer as governor, likes his private sector job in banking, and his higher income. “Someone said, ‘Politics is in my blood,’ and I said, ‘I got a transfusion.’ ”
But, he admits, “I do kind of miss politics.”
The “scurrilous charges” of marital infidelity that forced him out of running for a full gubernatorial term back in 2010 have “less of a sting now,” he said. “Eight years have gone by.” Paterson and his then-wife Michelle divorced in 2014.
Term limits preclude Mayor de Blasio from seeking re-election in 2021; City Comptroller Scott Stringer and Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. are already being touted as his potential successors.
Paterson is in no rush, he told his supporters. He said, “I’ll think it over and talk to them again.”
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