Michael Faulkner has withdrawn his name from the ballot in the Republican Primary, and will instead take on Comptroller Scott Stringer, a Democrat, in this year's General Election.
That currently leaves Paul Massey and Nicole Malliotakis, an assemblywoman who represents parts of Staten Island and Brooklyn.
Last week, all five Republican county chairs released a joint statement supporting Faulkner, a pastor and former member of the New York Jets. They listed a host of qualifications for their decision - integrity, consistency, discipline, community activism – but fail to mention how his NFL statistics played into it.
In fact, we're calling right now on Faulkner to release his professional sports statistics like every other professional athlete-turned-politician that has come before him. This is unprecedented!
While Faulkner has the support of all five county chairs despite the intrigue surrounding his days with Gang Green, Massey has is still working on citywide support. He has, however, picked up the endorsement of the Queens County Republican Party Bob Turner.
“Paul Massey is the only candidate who can beat Bill de Blasio in November,” said Turner, himself a former congressman. “I have gotten to know Paul well over the years, and he is a serious man who will work tirelessly to address the city’s problems.”
Massey also has the support of the New York State Independence Party, and is working on getting the support of the Conservative Party, as well.
And he also has the support of his former challenger, as Faulkner and Massey cross-endorsed each other's respective bids for office on Monday.
“Paul’s agenda is exactly the type of proven business leadership our party and our city need," Faulkner said. "His perseverance to lift this city to greatness is a stark contrast with our current failed leadership in City Hall.
Massey also released his fundraising numbers for March 12 through May 11, when the candidate raised over $555,000.
Raising money was ultimately the reason that State Senator Tony Avella withdrew his name from the Democratic Primary in a challenge to de Blasio. Avella said it was looking more and more like an impossible task to defeat de Blasio's deep pockets.
“If able to stay in this race the entire way I knew that with my resume, coupled with the incumbent’s disrespect, disregard, and disdain for the everyday New Yorker, my message could resonate with New York,” Avella said in a statement announcing that he was suspending his campaign. “Five months later, however, I have found that staying in this race without being beholden to dark money is becoming increasingly difficult.”
As for the Republican, there is still the elephant in the room in the form of the bombastic presence of Bo Dietl, who is still trying to get on the Republican Primary ballot.
Dietl was originally going to challenge de Blasio as a Democrat, but when he went to switch his party affiliation screwed up the process and left himself registered in neither party.
Now he'll need the support of the county chairs to run, but has already picked up the support of Queens councilman Eric Ulrich, who at one time was considered a possible Republican challenger to the mayor.
The other elephant in the room for the Republicans? Recent poll numbers show de Blasio handily beating Massey in November.