Riding in a van with reporters on his five borough tour yesterday, candidate Bill Thompson weighed in on the media storm that has engulfed Anthony Weiner since he jumped into the mayoral race two weeks ago.
“If anything, I didn’t know that CNN was interested in this election,” Mr. Thompson said with a smile. “It has created additional media attention–that it has done. I don’t know if it’s increased the attention on the public’s part but I know it has increased media attention,” he said. “Other than that, I don’t know that there is any real change.”
Mr. Thompson, of course, has a reputation for being more far more tempered than his wise-cracking rival, and has generated fewer headlines than some of the other candidates in the race. Still, he refused to emulate Mr. Weiner’s tricks. Mr. Thompson was asked, for instance, whether he would consider adopting Mr. Weiner’s notable debate posture: standing up to answer questions. How about rolling up his sleeves?
“I think I’m going to be continuing what I’ve been doing,” Mr. Thomspon maintained.
Mr. Thompson, who is frequently seen whispering with Mr. Weiner at mayoral forums, said he didn’t interact much with the scandal-scarred former congressman when Mr. Weiner was in office, but added that any discussions between the two when Mr. Thompson was comptroller had been “friendly” and “cordial.”
When reporters finished pelting Mr. Thompson with questions about his new rival, he turned around to ask one of his own.
“How long do you think the extra coverage goes?” he asked.
There was laughter in the van, then silence.