Amid slew of migrant protests, Sliwa vows to challenge Adams again in 2025

NY: Rally Against Migrant Center in Midland Beeach
Curtis Sliwa speaks at a rally against the opening of a migrant center in Midlland Beach.
Photo by Gabriele Holtermann

Former mayoral candidate Curtis Sliwa said Tuesday that he plans to challenge Mayor Eric Adams in 2025, taking another shot at the city’s top job.

“Yes, I will be running for NYC mayor,” Sliwa said in a Wednesday statement to amNewYork Metro. “I still need to file the paperwork and raise funds, as I am not an official candidate. But, when the time comes, I will be ready to campaign.”

Sliwa, a Republican who’s led a barrage of protests against the administration’s efforts to shelter migrants throughout the five boroughs in recent weeks, declared his intention to launch another bid for mayor at a Sept. 5 rally outside a closed Staten Island private school the city is using as temporary migrant housing. He’s trying his luck running for City Hall again after handily losing to Adams in 2021.

“Eric Adams, here we are,” the Republican said, according to a report from the New York Post. “I know you can’t find Staten Island without a GPS but in two years I’m coming after you, Eric Adams.”

The mayoral hopeful, who founded the Guardian Angels, vowed to take the mayor to task for placing emergency migrant shelters in neighborhoods throughout the city with little notice.

“I’m going to be his worst nightmare,” he said. “Every neighborhood that he’s done this, I’m going to remind him.”

Sliwa also reportedly threatened to shut down the bridges to Staten Island over the city’s siting of shelter’s in the borough. The protest marked the latest of several in the past week over the 300-bed migrant shelter in the shuttered private school — known as St. John Villa Academy.

Besides the Staten Island school shelter, Sliwa has also led protests of an over 2,000-bed facility likely to be erected at Brooklyn’s Floyd Bennett Field and outside of Gracie Mansion, where he called on Adams to start housing migrants in his own backyard. Adams had volunteered the mayoral residence as potential migrant housing earlier in the year, but soon backtracked, claiming it isn’t permitted under city law.

The Guardian Angels founder has spewed anti-immigrant rhetoric at the protests, casting asylum seeking migrants as criminals and opportunists taking advantage of New York’s status as a sanctuary city and right-to-shelter law. He’s advocated for cutting off the flow of migrants to the city and sending them to Washington D.C. instead of continuing to offer them shelter.

However, many of the asylum seekers who’ve shown up in the city are families fleeing countries experiencing crises like rampant violence and economic collapse.

When asked about Sliwa’s demonstrations at a news conference late last month, Adams brushed off his former opponent, dubbing him a “buffoon.”

“Well, anytime you start out a question with the name Curtis Sliwa, that in itself states that it would do a disservice to me and other New Yorkers for me to even respond,” Adams said in response to a reporter’s question at the time. “Curtis Sliwa? I mean, you go look in a dictionary for the word buffoon and tell me what picture you come up with.”

Adams’ office did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sliwa’s plans to run.