EAST WILLIAMSBURG, Brooklyn — Mayoral candidate Andrew Yang stopped by Microgrids Network Monday morning as the company broke ground for a new expansion.
“As mayor, I’m going to commit to streamlining the approval of green energy projects,” Yang said.
While the candidate tried to focus on his campaign talking points, Yang couldn’t escape the growing controversies around his recent comments about the city’s street vendors.
Yang declared Monday, “I love street vendors, as many New Yorkers do.”
But a tweet over the weekend implied that he would crack down on street vendors, creating an uproar.
“You know what I hear over and over again – that NYC is not enforcing rules against unlicensed street vendors. I’m for increasing licenses but we should do more for the retailers who are paying rent and trying to survive,” the tweet said.
Trying to clarify his comments Yang explained Monday that he wants to grow the network of licensed street vendors.
“The goal should be to try to increase the number of licenses support these vendors and bring them more into the formal economy,” he said.
Fellow candidate Scott Stringer called a press conference just to call Yang out. Stringer said he stands with street vendors.
“Whether it’s selling tamales or churros or halal food, during the darkest days of this pandemic they continued to serve New Yorkers,” he said.
Yang also came under fire after his National Pet Day tweet, writing about a dog his family gave away years ago. Yang clarified that the decision to give the dog away was made after his son had an allergic reaction.
“That’s when I knew I would have to give my dog away. Oh that was terrible,” Yang said.
When PIX11 asked Yang about being under constant attack from opponents Yang said, “I’ll leave it up to the other candidates to run their campaigns as they see fit.”