Paterson Hems ‘n Haws Over Who to Back for Mayor

Which side are you on anyway? Democratic Gov. David Paterson says he still hasn't decided who to endorse for mayor – a shocker for those who figured he'd back the guy in his own party and a big turnaround from what he said just a few months ago. 

"I haven't announced the person that I think should be mayor, and I guess I'll do that before an election," Paterson said as he was leaving an event yesterday with Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the Republican on the ticket this fall, reports the Daily News

Hmmmm. It's the second time in four weeks that Paterson has opted not to support City Comptroller William Thompson, the presumptive Democratic challenger to the mayor. Last month, Paterson flippantly dismissed a question from the Daily News Editorial Board on the subject, saying he'd make "some kind of announcement later on."

The governor's indecision marks a shocking turnaround from what he said in March. 

"I am the leader of the Democratic Party in New York State," Paterson said at the time. "I would expect that I'll support the winner of [the] Democratic primary."

Thompson is expected to handily win the primary over City Councilman Tony Avella (D-Queens) and already has focused significant campaign strategy on the general election. The Democrat's campaign has said that the comptroller has extensive support from party leaders, but they have yet to publicly list the guy at the top of the ticket among them. 

Paterson's hesitancy to endorse his party's candidate has some Democrats scratching their heads. Given the barrage of criticism he's faced recently and his adamant intentions to run for re-election next year, however, perhaps Paterson's reticent to endorse Bloomberg's opponent for fear of alienating such a powerful political player.

Just a thought. 

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