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Mayor Bill de Blasio: Endorsement to wait till after congressional primary

de Blasio at a ceremony in Harlem
de Blasio at a ceremony in Harlem
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images

For Bill de Blaiso, the Democratic mayor of New York city, endorsing a particular candidate before the June 24 primary of Democratic congressional primary is not in his character.

According to the former City's Public Advocate, even though he has interacted and worked closely with some of the candidates contesting the primary including Charles Rangel and Senator Adriano Espaillat, he does not want to be seen as having a favorite among them.

"I know the three leading candidates very well. I've worked with all of them and I think there's time, especially in the context of Democratic primary, where you say it's not a particular appropriate place to get involved for a variety of reasons," de Blasio explained.

To him, supporting a candidate involved in the 13th congressional district seat ahead of the primary is not a wise decision for political and personal reasons.

"I had to make the baseline decision that I think I should be involved and I came to the conclusion that I should not be and we'll obviously know in two weeks who the Democratic nominee is and at that time I'll support the Democratic nominee," the mayor reportedly added.

Political analysts believe that de Blasio's decision is a sensible one, given the fact that he enjoys unflinching support from the majority of Latinos in the district, and he will be committing political suicide if he loses that.

Also having endorsed and succeeded in supporting Melissa Mark-Viverito to the Council Speaker's seat, de Blasio is being cautious and playing the political game carefully.

Watchers of political situation here are of the opinion that the 53 year old first Democratic mayor since 1993 should be seen as a neutral political leader whose open endorsement of a particular candidate can have negative effects on his future politically.

Meanwhile Charles Rangel is having a 9-point lead over his closest rival Adriano Espaillat according to last month's joint poll by Siena College, New York Times and NY1.

Analysts including Basil Smikle believe that the non-endorsement may be seen by Rangel as a slap on the face. "Most people believe Rangel would expect the endorsement and want it," Smikle said.