State Sen. Zellnor Myrie launches committee for possible NYC mayoral run against Adams

NEW YORK — State Sen. Zellnor Myrie announced Wednesday he’s opening a campaign committee to raise money for a possible mayoral run, making him the second potential challenger against Mayor Eric Adams in the 2025 battle for City Hall.

Myrie, a progressive Democrat who represents the same swath of central Brooklyn once led by Adams in his state Senate days, said Wednesday that voters are tired of the current mayor’s “showmanship” and are yearning for “results.”

“New Yorkers want to see their government working relentlessly to make this city affordable, safe, and livable — and that’s why I’m taking the first steps to explore a race for mayor in 2025,” Myrie said in a written statement. “We need to build a city where families can find good housing in a safe neighborhood, schools to care for and educate our kids, and leadership that is laser-focused on solving our city’s challenges.”

Myrie, who was born in Brooklyn and whose parents emigrated from Costa Rica to the U.S., has focused much of his work as a lawmaker on gun safety, abortion and voting rights.

His announcement comes at a critical point in Adams’ tenure. Recent polls show Adams’ approval rating is the lowest it’s been since he was elected in 2021, and several probes — on the city, state and federal fronts — threaten to further diminish his standing among voters.

Those investigations include Manhattan federal prosecutors’ probe into the mayor’s ties to Turkey, the Manhattan DA’s ongoing case against Adams’ former buildings commissioner Eric Ulrich and a city Department of Investigation probe into Tim Pearson, a top adviser to the mayor.

Aside from Myrie’s possible challenge, former city Comptroller Scott Stringer, who served as Manhattan borough president and ran a failed campaign for mayor in 2021, is also mulling a City Hall run. Stringer announced in January that he was setting up a committee to explore a run of his own.

Like Stringer, Myrie is positioning himself as a results-oriented candidate who will be more effective than Adams at managing the city’s vast bureaucracy. Unlike Stringer, Myrie is a lawyer, but his experience as an elected official is limited to his tenure as a state lawmaker, which began in 2019.

“I sincerely welcome him into the deep end of the pool,” Stringer said of Myrie’s potential run against Adams.

A spokesman for the mayor’s campaign did not immediately respond to messages left by the Daily News.

Myrie came into the state Senate as part of a progressive surge, defeating Adams’ acolyte and successor, former state Sen. Jesse Hamilton, and flipping the Senate to Democratic from Republican control.

The potential Myrie mayoral run, which was first reported by the New York Times, is not likely to benefit the current mayor in ranked choice voting, according to veteran political observers.

Hank Sheinkopf, a longtime Democratic strategist who advised former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, said Myrie’s entry in the race could hurt Adams given that he’s likely to make at least some inroads with the incumbent’s base of outer-borough African-American voters.

“It takes a certain amount of votes away from Adams,” Sheinkopf said. “If there is a beneficiary here, it might be Stringer.”

At the same time, Sheinkopf said a Myrie bid could steer some votes away from Stringer, given their shared progressive leanings.

“It hurts everybody potentially,” he said.

Ultimately, though, it’ll be very hard for either Stringer or Myrie to unseat Adams.

“If crime is down and streets are cleaner and [Adams] can convince the electorate that the migrant crisis is ultimately the responsibility of the federal and state governments, then Adams is going to be very difficult to beat,” Sheinkopf said. “Any incumbent mayor is very hard to beat.”

Over the past 80 years, only two incumbent first-term New York City mayors, Abe Beame and David Dinkins, lost reelection, Sheinkopf noted.