Businessman and former presidential candidate Andrew Yang has filed paperwork to run for mayor of New York City, the city’s Campaign Finance Board confirmed on Wednesday.
Yang’s filing has the potential to immediately upend a race that was shaping up as a contest between long-entrenched city politicians. It comes just days after a new poll giving him a slight lead among his fellow Democrats running for mayor.
The entrepreneur sparked a huge following in the Democratic primaries for president with his call for universal basic income — $1,000 a month for every American over 18, no strings attached, funded by a tax on companies benefitting from automation. But, his broad internet popularity did not translate to votes as he’d hoped.
He has been widely reported to be considering a bid for mayor, and the Public Policy Polling survey released Monday was the second poll in recent weeks to show him with a lead over Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.
Yang would get 17 percent support in a Democratic primary, according to the PPP survey. That gives him a 1-point lead over Adams, with all other candidates at least 10 points back.
The field is far from set, though. Some 40 percent of voters said they weren’t sure who they would support, and the poll also left out multiple declared or potential candidates, including Rep. Max Rose, who recently filed papers to explore a run.
NYC’s primary election will be on June 22 next year. As of Tuesday, at least 35 people had filed paperwork with the finance board to run for mayor.