During interviews with The New York Times editorial board published Tuesday, Shaun Donovan and Ray McGuire, two candidates running for mayor of New York City, grossly underestimated the median price of homes in Brooklyn.
McGuire, a former Citigroup executive, estimated that homes in the borough cost “around $100,000,” while Donovan, who served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Barack Obama, said they cost “somewhere in the $80,000 to $90,000 range.”
The inaccuracies have sparked accusations that neither man is knowledgeable enough about ordinary people’s lives to lead the country’s most populous city, particularly because rising housing prices have created a crisis for low- and middle-income residents. (Donovan’s excuse for his incorrect response, that he “misinterpreted the question,” was mocked as well.)
Andrew Yang, a tech industry businessman who is also running for the nomination, was chastised in February for making an out-of-touch remark about his family’s decision to relocate from New York City during the pandemic.
“Can you imagine trying to have two kids on virtual school in a two-bedroom apartment, and then trying to do work yourself?” Yang said in an interview at the time. Many families in the city live in cramped housing, often sharing small apartments with several family members.
Yang, on the other hand, correctly answered the editorial board’s query about Brooklyn’s median housing price.
The Democratic primary began with a crowded field, but fewer than 10 candidates now have a viable shot at winning.