Bob Turner: GOP May Field New Mayoral Candidate

NEW YORK -

If the present Republican candidates do not gain traction in the New York City mayoral race, party insiders are planning to field a new candidate, former Rep. Bob Turner told Hamodia.

The New York Republican, who won a heavily Democratic district in a special election in 2011, said that billionaire John Catsimatidis “has been very helpful to many people, both in the political arena or privately, for a long time,” and former Metropolitan Transportation Authority chairman Joe Lhota “is a good executive.”

But he hinted that “there might be some more candidates.”

“We’ll see, I just don’t know yet,” Turner said. “It won’t be me, I’ll tell you that. Trust me.”

Turner said that details are too premature but could “possibly” happen.

“I can’t be sure what may happen,” he said. “The situation is still fluid. The primary isn’t until September, which is in a really long time.”

Turner, who just turned 72, is still busy coping with the fallout of Superstorm Sandy, which destroyed his Breezy Point home last October. For a long while he was mired in bureaucracy, but just submitted his rebuilding plans for approval last week. He hopes to start construction soon and move back in about eight months.

In the meantime, Turner is living in Kew Gardens and helping the Republican party weather the storm that engulfed them last month. Democratic state Sen. Malcolm Smith of Queens and the borough’s GOP deputy chairman were arrested for trying to bribe the Queens GOP chairman to allow him to run on the Republican line for mayor.

“I’m still involved a little in politics,” Turner said. “I’m trying to straighten out this Queens mess. And if I could be helpful in the mayoral race to support whoever our candidate is, I’d like to be helpful in that.”

He started an entertainment company with some old friends from his former career in the entertainment business, and said he was following the political scene closely.

“It’s going to be an interesting race,” he said.