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Harlem Pastor and Ex-Jets Player Scraps Mayoral Bid to Run for Comptroller

 Michel Faulkner.
Michel Faulkner.
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Michel Faulkner

HARLEM— The would-be Republican challenger who vowed to take on “bully” Mayor Bill de Blasio has scrapped his plans to run for mayor, turning his sights instead to the comptroller's office. 

Harlem pastor and former New York Jets player Michel Faulkner said he wants to challenge current Comptroller Scott Stinger in an effort to tighten the city's purse strings, “especially in this volatile economic situation that we’re in.”

“The problems facing the City of New York have economic roots,” he told DNAinfo New York.

“And the comptroller is complicit with the economic disasters that are facing New York City because he has not acted as the ombudsman that his position has intended to be for the City of New York.”

Faulkner raised a more than $64,000 for his mayoral bid, according to campaign finance records, compared to the more than $4 million raised by GOP front-runner Paul Massey.

“We need someone to truly represent the middle class and the poor,” Faulkner added of throwing his hat in the comptroller's race. “Neither our mayor or our comptroller are doing that.”

Stringer has been an outspoken critic of the city's efforts regarding homelessness, affordable housing, and contracts for minority- and women-owned businesses.

“We look forward to a substantive campaign and healthy debate,” Ilana Goldman, Stringer’s campaign manager, told The New York Daily News.