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On Jan. 17, in this space, we quoted Republican mayoral candidate-to-be John Catsimatidis as saying that former Gov. George Pataki “is going to support me.”
He was correct.
Today Pataki let his preference be known in the GOP primary and the election.
"John Catsimatidis has the skills, the vision, and the courage needed to lead New York City. He'll make a great mayor and that's why I am endorsing him today,” Pataki said in a statement released by the Catsimatidis campaign, adding:
"John's life story is the embodiment of the American dream; it has given him the commonsense and practical business experience needed to run a city as complex as New York. From his humble upbringing John has the compassion to relate to those New Yorkers in need and his record of creating tens of thousands of jobs will be put to use in enabling businesses large and small to add jobs throughout the five boroughs.
"Most importantly, John Catsimatidis isn't a career politician; he'll keep New York City on track and moving forward and he'll fight for small businesses, neighborhoods and New York's struggling middle class."
Catsimatidis said,"George Pataki understands what leadership is all about. During his 12 years as Governor he was a consensus builder; who brought together diverse groups for the common good. He understood the concerns of business leaders and the needs of working families. He got it, that 'the root cause of crime is the criminal' and he knew that every child deserves good health care and a good education.”
The value of Pataki's endorsement in a New York City race is unknown. While it puts a big-name New York Republican behind the former Democratic businessman, as he faces a primary against Joseph Lhota and possibly others, it may be remembered that despite being elected three times for governor in the 1994, 1998 and 2002, he never won a majority of voters in the five boroughs.
Also, some former closer Pataki aides, including John Cahill, Michael McKeon and Charles Gargano, are said to grace the list of donors to former MTA chairman Joseph Lhota for the two-month reporting period ending this week.