Mike Walrond on Possible De Blasio Endorsement: ‘The Mayor Is Extremely Smart’

Pastor Mike Walrond listens to a potential voter on 108th Street and First Avenue.

Pastor Mike Walrond listens to a potential voter on 108th Street and First Avenue.

Pastor Mike Walrond, who is also running in the hotly contested Democratic primary of the 13th Congressional District, cast doubt on Congressman Charlie Rangel’s claim this morning that Mayor Bill de Blasio supports him.

“If it is true it means that the mayor is extremely smart,” Mr. Walrond said. “I don’t really read a whole lot into it. I think that the congressman’s team believes that somehow throwing attention my way or raising my profile takes some of the anti-Rangel votes away from Senator Espaillat.”

“The Congressman already said that he hasn’t met with the mayor any time recently so this conversation had to take place a while ago. So, why now the revelation? Why now share it unless there is something else behind it,” he added.

Earlier today, Mr. de Blasio said Mr. Rangel’s claim was highly “inaccurate.” Mr. de Blasio, who is close to Mr. Walrond, said he was staying neutral in the race.

Even though the polls do not forecast a possible Walrond victory, the pastor’s determination remains intact.

“I went in this to win, so that is my expectation,” he said. “It has not changed, no matter what the polls say.”

He also gave the Observer his own electoral prediction, favorable, of course, to his camp: “I think a lot of people will be in for a surprise tonight, they are going to be shocked.”

Mr. Walrond will watch the results at the First Corinthian Baptist Church, where he usually preaches and teaches. If he loses, he said he would endorse tonight’s winner.