Joe Lhota Steps Down As N.Y. MTA Head


To run or not to run? (mtaphotos' flickr).

All of that pressure from the New York Post seems to be working. Though we sort of assumed it was all hot air, non-Republican In Name Only, GOP mayoral candidates out of the woodwork, the Times today reports that MTA CEO Joe Lhota, fresh off his Hurricane Sandy performance, is really considering running for mayor next year. And according to the Mayor of 9/11-town, and former Lhota boss Rudy Giuliani, he should make a decision by Christmas. We guess we'd rather a Boxing Day election announcement over another blizzard?

The sometimes hotheaded Lhota, who hasn't even been on the job that long, earned a tremendous amount of good will after getting the MTA to respond during and after last month's super storm (though yeah, the R train still needs some work). One reason he might not run, however, is that to do so he'll have to step down from the MTA which, as the Times notes would, deprive "Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of his best-known appointee and instantly shaking up the 2013 mayoral campaign."

Still, asked about the chance of a Lhota run today, Cuomo seemed open to the idea, saying, "

I would like to see Mr. Lhota do what Mr. Lhota wants to do. He has done an extraordinary job as head of the MTA. The entire region got to do that during the storm, Sandy. I knew how well he was performing but they actually saw the performance." Of course, Cuomo then also said he was going to be staying "out of the politics of New York City if I can avoid it."

Lhota, for his part, ain't talking.

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