John Catsimatidis sat down with The Real Deal to talk about just how great Downtown Brooklyn is (who knew?!) and while that topic dominates the discussion, the real estate rag couldn’t help but bring up next year’s mayoral elections. After all, the grocery store magnate and billionaire developer has been bandied about as a possible Republican candidate in the race to replace Mayor Michael Bloomberg. While he may no longer be interested in that job, he’s not sure the woman widely considered the most-pro-business candidate in the pack of potential Bloomberg successors is ready for it either.
You announced your candidacy for Mayor in 2009, but eventually endorsed Mayor Bloomberg. Do you have any interest in the position this time around?
They’re trying to get me to do it again, but I don’t need it. I don’t have an ego. I just want to do the right thing for the city. I said I’d rather find somebody qualified to run. In the last 12 years, [Mayor Bloomberg’s] leadership has led to billions and billions of dollars of investment by Europeans and by the international community. We need somebody that’s going to provide confidence to the international business community to keep supporting New York City. We are looking at people; we are talking to people, but we haven’t made any decisions.
What do you make of Christine Quinn as a candidate?
I’ve met with Christine. She’s a very lovely lady, but she has to prove that she’s capable of being tough enough to be mayor.
Hey, at least he called her lovely. Then again, maybe an ambivalent endorsement from Mr. Catsimatidis is just what the City Council speaker needs. Snide remarks from a conservative supermarket mogul could help her in her quest to shore up her business support without seeming too pro-business and losing points with her liberal base.