All eight mayoral candidates, Ray McGuire, Maya Wiley, Andrew Yang, Scott Stringer, Shaun Donovan, Eric Adams, Kathryn Garcia and Dianne Morales, speak during the second mayoral debate on June 2, 2021.
Every single one of the eight Democrats running for mayor vowed to protect illegal immigrants from deportation, solidifying the Big Apple’s often infamous status as a “sanctuary city.”
The mayoral wannabes doubled down on current Mayor de Blasio’s approach of barring local authorities from reporting the immigration status of residents to federal authorities during their second televised debate on WABC-TV Channel 7 Wednesday.
“We have to be a true sanctuary city. We have to live up to our values, which means making investments in our families regardless of documentation,” said former Sanitation Commissioner Kathryn Garcia, who recently moved into the top tier of candidates.
Garcia said she worked to provide free food to needy New Yorkers during the coronavirus pandemic, regardless of their immigration status.
“We’re a sanctuary city, this is about respect, it’s about dignity, it’s about support, it’s about those who have allowed the city — and sacrificed for this city — to be where it is as we managed through COVID,” said former Citigroup executive Ray McGuire.
Entrepreneur Andrew Yang, the son of legal Taiwanese immigrants, said, “I appreciate anyone who comes to this country or New York City for a better life.”
And Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said migrants were his neighbors growing up in Queens.
“My mother worked two jobs to provide for the six of us and we had a group of undocumented residents that lived in our community,” Adams said.
The other candidates — city comptroller Scott Stringer, former Obama housing secretary Shaun Donovan and nonprofit leader Dianne Morales — also voiced their support for the Big Apple as a sanctuary city.
De Blasio repeatedly tangled with former President Donald Trump over the policy with Trump threatening to withhold federal funding from the city until a judge blocked the move.
Given that the vast majority of the city’s voters are registered Democrats, the winner of the Democratic mayoral primary on June 22 will most likely succeed de Blasio at City Hall.