By George Capsis

The always smiling and articulate City Council Speaker (who I thought was next in line to become the mayor) announced on Thursday, September 24th, that he would drop his run for mayor. 

This came as a surprise to me because whenever I offered his name in an article I would suggest with complete conviction that he was most likely going to be the next mayor; and then the reason for his quitting was a real shocker—the ever-smiling, ever-articulate Corey was a victim of depression.

When Corey first attempted to run for the city council he rang my doorbell and asked if WestView would endorse him. I explained we didn’t endorse politicians as we might have to criticize them later.

Corey Johnson cites depression for quitting bid for mayor. Corey Johnson, now City Council Speaker, in a surprise statement cited depression for quitting the race to become the next mayor of New York. Seen here with George Capsis, publisher of WestView, shortly after winning his seat on the council. Photo by Maggie Berkvist.

The morning after Corey’s unannounced visit, the doorbell rang again. My wife, Maggie, went to the front door and then escorted two slight elderly women dressed in matching black to the garden. They were Corey’s mother and aunt from Boston who wanted to plea for him: “He’s a nice boy and deserves the job.” (Later, Corey would remind me of this visit and smile).

Corey had been a football player in a Boston suburb. In the last game against their arch rivals, his team won and stormed into the dressing room shouting with elation. Corey climbed on a bench and shouted for silence. He disclosed that because his family was poor, he, unlike the others, would not be going to college. He further explained that as this was perhaps the last time he would see them he wanted there to be no secrets; and then he announced he was gay.

Corey has confessed easily to all the vices, alcohol, and drugs. But when seeing him on TV speaking before the City Council, I’ve been struck by his knowledge and easy, effective delivery—as if he were born to the job—so I was sure he would be our next mayor. But yesterday he announced that he was suffering from a “loss of joy,” from depression. He quit.

I only wish that WestView could afford him—he would make a good editor.

1 thought on “Corey Johnson Drops Mayoral Bid

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      I was so disappointed when I heard Corey Johnson would not be running for Mayor. He has accomplished so many great things, I thought long ago that he would be a perfect candidate, someone I really believe in. I am heartbroken to hear the reason for his withdrawal from the race, I wish him well & hope that he will soon be able to overcome his depression. Just this past Wednesday, I had my free flu shot, a first for me, at Northwell Health thanks to Corey. He helped to provide a place I could walk to, a place I felt was safe. There are so many other things on my list of thanks to Corey. I hope that realizing the appreciation of myself & my neighbors will help.

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