NYC Press Corps Teaches Andrew Yang About the City, One Gaffe At A Time


For former presidential candidate Andrew Yang, who entered the New York Metropolis mayor’s race as a frontrunner in January, this week introduced into sharp aid some yawning gaps between what he is aware of and what he doesn’t concerning the primary functioning of New York Metropolis.

On Thursday, flanked by former NYPD officer Edwin Raymond, who’s working for Metropolis Council, Yang was requested by NY Put up reporter Julia Marsh if he supported the repeal of 50-a, the long-standing legislation that shielded police self-discipline information from public view. State legislatures repealed the legislation final yr, amid large public demonstrations following the homicide of George Floyd.

Learn Extra: We have reported on 50-a greater than a dozen instances up to now yr

“The repeal of 50-a,” Yang repeated, blankly. “Have you learnt what 50-a is?” Marsh prodded. “This isn’t the, it’s not the necessary interview of the…” Raymond tried to push Yang in direction of the proper topic space, muttering below his breath, “the information, the disciplinary information.” At which level Yang lastly arrived — “Um, I feel we should always get extra transparency when it comes to law enforcement officials and their information.”

Earlier on Thursday, at a taped discussion board on the way forward for homelessness sponsored by WIN, the biggest supplier of shelter and supportive housing for homeless households within the metropolis, Yang stated it will be “terribly useful” for the town to have shelters particularly for victims of home violence. The occasion was moderated by Spectrum NY1 reporter Courtney Gross who famous, “There are already quite a few home violence shelters… They do exist already.”

Yang walked again his statements, his eyes darting to the proper of his zoom display, insisting he’d meant that there wasn’t sufficient capability at such amenities.

“There are. Oh no, I, in fact they do exist, in order that’s one facet of one thing we needs to be growing capability of,” he stated, pivoting to speak concerning the want for extra beds in psychiatric amenities. “There are lots of issues we needs to be growing capability of.”

As of final yr, the town had 2,500 emergency beds for survivors of home violence and about 800 households are housed within the system on any given day, in response to metropolis figures.

Learn Extra: Right here’s the mayor’s administration report, a really helpful doc to find out about New York Metropolis

Yang sat down with Gothamist / WNYC shortly after that press convention in Brooklyn Thursday and stated working for mayor “has been a blast” and he’s realized a lot about New York Metropolis within the course of. He stated his marketing campaign has put out over 80 pages of coverage that current a transparent imaginative and prescient for the town however, he careworn, he doesn’t assume folks in authorities have all of the solutions.

“My aim as mayor will likely be to take the work that oftentimes others are doing after which increase it and amplify it. I am not somebody who thinks the federal government goes to have the entire solutions and even many of the solutions,” Yang defined. “I really feel like oftentimes, particularly in a spot like New York, they’re going to be some nonprofit group or activist group that’s tackling it and has been engaged on it for years which you can construct on and be taught from.”

Requested particularly whether or not he had reviewed current metropolis and state insurance policies, like 50-a, he stated, “You wish to know what’s in place, you wish to know what’s working and what’s not,” he stated. “Cops have advised me that they’ve tailored, however it’s one thing price revisiting if officers really feel like it will allow them to do their jobs safely and responsibly.”

Learn Extra: Mayoral Candidates Are Speaking About Metropolis Takeover Of The Subway

A day earlier, Yang had supplied a 26-word proposition for a metropolis takeover of the MTA exterior the company’s headquarters in Decrease Manhattan. Metropolis Council Speaker Corey Johnson revealed a 104-page proposal on the topic greater than a yr in the past.

When requested what would occur to the MTA’s working funds and anticipated deficit, he punted to James Rubin, a former state operations director for Governor Andrew Cuomo, who dismissed the query. “5 folks on this world who perceive the spaghetti construction that the MTA’s debt exists,” Rubin stated.

Later within the presser, Yang appeared to not know that the town’s Division of Transportation already controls many bridges throughout the 5 boroughs, whereas the Port Authority and the MTA function others.

Learn Extra: What Does The Mayor of New York Metropolis Do?

Jake Sporn, a advisor for Tusk Methods and spokesperson for Yang, stated the candidate was in fixed communication with coverage consultants, teachers, advocates.

“New Yorkers aren’t going to be distracted from the truth that [Yang is] as pragmatic, progressive, and considerate on these points as anybody who’s ever competed for this job—whether or not he recites statutory code numbers.”

Learn Extra: This is an inventory of bridges managed by the metropolis, MTA inside New York Metropolis, and the Port Authority. And right here’s an summary of the MTA’s 42.9 billion debt.

Mayoral opponents who’ve been persistently trailing behind Yang in citywide polls seized on the newest fumbles as extra proof Yang was ill-equipped to steer a metropolis of greater than 8 million folks.

“Andrew Yang’s ignorance of essential points going through our metropolis isn’t simply insulting — it’s harmful,” New York Metropolis Comptroller Scott Stringer stated. “The size of what Andrew Yang doesn’t learn about metropolis authorities is matched solely by the huge vacancy of his concepts.”

At a press convention on Friday afternoon Maya Wiley stated if she was elected, there could be, “no police officer whispering in my ear telling me the way to reply questions,” referring Edwin Raymond teaching Yang.

“Now, are you able to think about a girl working to be the mayor of the biggest metropolis within the nation not really understanding how the police division works?” Wiley requested. “Let’s be trustworthy, I don’t assume that may fly, and admittedly, I do not assume it ought to.”