“As far as I know, she’s the first Republican woman to run,” said Adele Malpass, the chairwoman of the Manhattan Republican Party. (As it turns out, Diane McGrath ran on the Republican and Conservative lines for mayor in 1985; she finished third to Ed Koch and Carol Bellamy.)
Ms. Malliotakis has challenged Mr. de Blasio on his handling of undocumented immigrants, saying the city has gone too far in trying to protect those accused of low-level crimes from deportation. She is one of two state lawmakers from Staten Island who filed a lawsuit seeking to stop the city’s destruction of documents, like copies of foreign passports, used to verify a person’s identity in the obtaining of an IDNYC card, which is issued by the city’s municipal identification program.
“I think there hasn’t been much excitement in this race,” she said. “I feel that Mayor de Blasio is someone that many people across the political spectrum have expressed displeasure with.”
Her nascent campaign joins one already loudly underway by Bo Dietl, a former police detective and private security businessman who would like to run as a Republican, if the party allows it.
Mr. Dietl secured the endorsement on Monday of a city councilman, Eric A. Ulrich, who had considered a mayoral run himself and is one of only three Republicans in the 51-member body — a modest help to Mr. Dietl’s efforts to win party backing. “I’ve been a lifelong Republican my whole life,” Mr. Dietl said at a news conference with Mr. Ulrich.
The jockeying for position at the front of a growing pack will be on full display on Wednesday night as the candidates present their cases during a screening of candidates on the Upper East Side by the Manhattan Republican Party and the party’s leaders from other boroughs.
The lineup will also include Mr. Massey, a former real estate sales executive who has demonstrated an ability to raise — and spend — significant money, and the Rev. Michel J. Faulkner, a Harlem pastor and a former New York Jets player. Ms. Malliotakis is expected to be part of the event as well.
“Someone up there is going to be our nominee,” Ms. Malpass said. “I am truly undecided. I am waiting to see them present their vision of the city Wednesday and how they plan to make Bill de Blasio a one-term mayor.”
Mr. Catsimatidis is unlikely to be at the screening; he continued to hold back from declaring a run and in recent days has appeared unlikely to jump into the race. (Ms. Malpass said if he did declare before Wednesday evening, he could still take part.)
The addition of Ms. Malliotakis adds a new dynamic to a race already complicated by the candidacy of Mr. Dietl, who had been seen as a wild-card alternative to Mr. de Blasio despite his florid and occasionally profane language and the wide target presented by his past tax issues and work for Fox News.
Mr. Dietl’s from-the-hip style is reminiscent of President Trump’s, but the electorate in New York is far different from that of the nation. Any Republican primary victor would face the daunting odds in the general election of a six-to-one voter registration advantage in favor of the Democratic Party.
For that reason, and with poll numbers showing Mr. de Blasio defeating Mr. Massey handily, Mr. de Blasio’s campaign has shown little concern about the growing Republican field. Dan Levitan, a campaign spokesman for the mayor, said his record in office spoke for itself: “More jobs. Lower crime and better police-community relations. Pre-K and record affordable housing.”
A decision about party endorsements will need to come soon: Candidates must begin gathering the required petitions to get on the ballot in June, and the party must decide whether to grant Mr. Dietl, who because of a paperwork error is no longer a registered Republican, a chance to run in the party primary by the middle of July. Party leaders have indicated they may support Mr. Dietl for a so-called Wilson Pakula certificate — in which a majority of county leaders decide to allow a nonparty member to run on the party line — even if they also offer an endorsement to a different candidate.
That makes the events of this week particularly consequential, especially the screening, in which top party officials will have their first chance to compare the candidates.
Mr. Faulkner, who in the last financial filing showed a negative balance for his campaign, must present a case for how he can win despite gaining little traction in almost two years of campaigning. Ms. Malliotakis would have to show party leaders that her candidacy was serious, despite her late entry.
For Mr. Massey, the task will be to appear statesmanlike and charismatic enough to win over skeptical party leaders.
“Paul Massey is the only G.O.P. candidate who can beat Bill de Blasio in November,” his spokeswoman, Mollie Fullington, said, pointing to his fund-raising prowess, “campaign infrastructure” and management ability.
For Mr. Dietl, the question will be whether he can project the bearing of a potential mayor. He said he was preparing, although he did not like it.
“I hate prep,” he said in a telephone interview. “I like to talk off the cuff.”
An article on Tuesday about New York City’s mayoral race, using information from Republican Party officials, erroneously attributed a distinction to one candidate, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis. She will not in fact be the first woman to run for mayor of New York City as a Republican. (Diane McGrath ran as a Republican in 1985, losing to Mayor Edward I. Koch.)
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