Councilman David Yassky — whose hopes to win a seat in Congress were quashed last year by his Council colleague Yvette Clarke — has reportedly declared that he will run again, this time to replace city Comptroller Bill Thompson, himself an aspirant for higher office.
By tossing his name into the mix, Yassky (D–Brooklyn Heights) will face off against four declared candidates for the city’s highest financial post: Assemblyman Jim Brennan (D–Park Slope), Councilman Simcha Felder (D–Borough Park), Councilwoman Melinda Katz (D–Manhattan), and Councilman David Weprin (D–Queens).
Yassky, who is term-limited and has been having internal discussions with his “kitchen cabinet” about what higher office he should seek next, told The Brooklyn Paper, “My record in the City Council is perfectly suited to making the most out of the Comptroller position.” His run for the office was first reported in the New York Sun.
And he won his first election to the Council in 2001, despite having very short roots in Brooklyn Heights, where he relocated after working as a Congressional staffer in Washington, D.C.
Yassky is no stranger to difficult races. Last year, he ran as the only white candidate in a five-way race to replace retiring Rep. Major Owens (D–Flatbush) in a congressional district that had been created in the 1960s to increase the voting power of African-Americans. Yassky came in second place, winning 26 percent of the vote to Clarke’s 31 percent.
Yassky has yet to register any fundraising activities with the city’s Campaign Finance Board. But his competitors already have hefty bankrolls. Weprin has more than $1.2 million in the bank, Katz has more than $1.3 million, Felder has close to $1 million, and Brennan has $246,000.