Twenty-fifteen marked the 50th anniversary of William F. Buckley’s failed run for mayor of New York. In the photo above, it looks like WFB is pulling one out of British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli’s playbook, looking artistocratically bored while his opponent speaks. It’s not hard to imagine him closing his eyes and feigning to snore.
Buckley never expected to win, and didn’t. Here’s a terse synopsis via Wikipedia:
In 1965, Buckley ran for mayor of New York City as the candidate for the new Conservative Party. He ran to restore momentum to the conservative cause in the wake of Goldwater’s defeat. He tried to take votes away from the relatively liberal Republican candidate and fellow Yale alumnus John Lindsay, who later became a Democrat. Buckley did not expect to win; indeed, when asked what he would do if he won the race, Buckley responded, “Demand a recount.” And used an unusual campaign style; during one televised debate with Lindsay, Buckley declined to use his allotted rebuttal time and instead replied, “I am satisfied to sit back and contemplate my own former eloquence.”
To relieve traffic congestion, Buckley proposed charging cars a fee to enter the central city, and a network of bike lanes. He opposed a civilian review board for the New York Police Department, which Lindsay had recently introduced to control police corruption and install community policing. Buckley finished third with 13.4% of the vote, possibly having inadvertently aided Lindsay’s election by instead taking votes from Democratic candidate Abe Beame.
And here’s the link to a lengthy National Review piece on the anniversary.
Finally, below is a short clip from “Meet The Press” in which Buckley casually explains why he should get your vote. — CC