Former U.S. Rep. Max Rose, a Democrat who represented one of the few conservative corners of New York City, stepped out of the now highly contested race for mayor after filing paperwork for a campaign in early December.
Rose, 34, filed paperwork with the city Campaign Finance Board that allowed him to begin fundraising for the campaign despite insisting to News 4 just months ago it would never happen. Before the November election, the Staten Island congressman denied rumors that he was going to run for mayor.
“You think that a short, bald Jewish guy from Brooklyn is gonna get elected mayor? I’m running for reelection and that’s the position I want,” Rose told NBC New York in September. Even if he lost his seat, Rose said, he wasn’t going to run for mayor, “no ifs, ands or buts.”
Nearly three weeks later, Rose took to Twitter to reverse course yet again, saying he wouldn’t campaign for the position next year.
“Representing New York’s 11th Congressional District has been an incredible honor and privilege. While I won’t be a candidate for Mayor this cycle, I am not going anywhere in the fight to make our city and country live up to their promise,” his statement read.
The former congressman’s announcement comes the same day Congress convened for the start of a new session, swearing in the newest class of lawmakers.
Rose lost his seat to Republican Nicole Malliotakis, 40, a member of the state Assembly (who herself lost a bid for mayor in 2017).
The district is much whiter and more Republican than the rest of New York City and is well-known as a home to an outsized number of current and retired police officers, a factor that may have played a role in the race.
During his 2020 campaign, Rose, an Army combat veteran, distanced himself from fellow Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio, creating an ad calling de Blasio the “worst mayor ever.”
NYC’s primary election will be on June 22 this year. At the end of 2020, nearly three dozen people had filed paperwork with the finance board to run for mayor.