Former NBA Commissioner David Stern Urged to Run for NYC Mayor

David Stern and Adam Silver Photo by Kathy Willens
Kathy Willens AP

In the wake of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s popularity plunging, friends push former NBA Commissioner David Stern, a munificent donor to the Democratic Party, to run as a 2017 New York City mayoral candidate.

Stern, an attorney, retired from the NBA in 2103 after a record-setting run of 30 years, the longest for any commissioner in American professional sports. One source reported, “He’s pretty bored. He’s always been interested in politics, and he’s always been interested in running for office.” An associate of Stern’s told the New York Post‘s Page Six, “He’s tough as nails. He’s popular with the black community. New York would be lucky to have him as mayor.”

Stern coyly denied he would run, saying, “I remain a happy Westchester resident and am very busy as a senior adviser to a number of enterprises.”

Various figures have been reported regarding Stern’s largesse vis-à-vis the Democratic Party.

Page Six stated that he has donated $311,400 to Democrats, with $5,000 going to Barack Obama in 2012, and the legal maximum of $30,800 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in 2011. Basketball.realgm reported in November 2011 that over the decades, Stern has given the Democratic Party over $1 million. asserted in 2012 that Stern had given the Democratic Party $311,400 since 2009, and attended a $30,000-a-plate fundraiser for Barack Obama and the Democratic National Committee in 2012. ESPN said in March 2006 that Stern had given the Democratic Party $781,780 over the years. USA Today reported in late October 2004 that Stern had donated $196,500 to the Democratic Party in 2003-2004.

Stern has used his wealth to fund the candidacies of Henry Waxman, Nita Lowey, Ed Markey, Al Franken, and other liberal Democrats.