Andrew Yang will he be the next mayor of New York?
As Yang continues his journey through Flushing, he talks about his vision and listens to the concerns of voters. At one point, he takes refuge in a boba tea shop. “I really enjoy this place!” he said, beaming as he pulled a piece of paper from a lacquered box on the back wall of the establishment, a Taiwanese tradition called the raffle. As supporters crowd into the shop, he reads the slip, which contains both an adage and a forecast of future luck: “He says: don’t feel alone; count on your friends to get through difficult times, ”he announces.
“Good luck,” a woman in the crowd adds, looking at the forecast on Yang’s sheet of paper. “It is very difficult to be lucky.”
“Good luck!” Yang said. “It’s quite poignant.
Andrew Yang is on the ferry to Staten Island.
Wearing the same style of striped scarf he wears everyday, he spots the Statue of Liberty mugging and waving. “Look at this!” he says. “Very patriotic!” His country photographer takes a few pictures of him looking into the distance.
I note how far we are from the starting point. I mean it literally. Getting from Throgs Neck to Staten Island can take hours, unless you have a helicopter or a speedboat. In the five boroughs, more than 8 million New Yorkers live, including 1 million public school students, nearly 60,000 homeless, 325,000 civil servants, 2 million homeowners and 113 billionaires (to give or to take). Being the mayor of all of these people is often described as the second toughest job in American politics, and it may in fact be the first.
Over the course of several conversations, Yang and I discuss his plan to build a sort of city-state with a pro-business orientation, nimble social services, and excellent physical infrastructure. A bit like the Fiorello La Guardia administration, remade for our late capitalist era. The bureaucratic obstacles are real, Yang tells me. The city’s budget, with its $ 4 billion shortfall, is also a problem. But he quickly pivoted to his plans to attract more state and federal resources, his willingness to find “modest added value” and his desire to milk the city’s billionaires and work with his nonprofits.
Yang sits with me inside the ferry, digressing the ingenuity of New York philanthropy, when we see a man on the deck outside raising his cane and punching a Getty photographer. The photographer, Spencer Platt, followed Yang on the road to the countryside; the attack is random and unprovoked.
“Oh my God!” Yang yells, and we rush outside, where Platt and the assailant argue. The forward turns to see Andrew Yang, in his Andrew Yang mask. “Yang for New York!” he says, star-struck, as Platt escapes. “You are the man! Would you like me to support you?”
“I would like that,” Yang said, her body tensed but her tone warm. He examines the man’s elaborate gold necklace. “Is this one of those Bullets 4 Peace necklaces?” he asks, referring to a line of jewelry made from worn gut.