After his last two efforts fell well short, Marlon Anderson has entered the race for Albany mayor.
The longtime Albany advocate and activist announced his candidacy Saturday afternoon at the corner of Central Avenue and Robin Street, less than half a block away from the scene of the previous weekend's shooting that left four injured and a pregnant woman dead.
Anderson says with over 100 shootings in 2020, the current administration is sitting on its hands.
"Have they put forth any legislation to address it? Have they put forth any strong police presence or anything like that in the community? No! What they've done is what they always do politics as usual. They put together committees and task force to talk about the issue and make recommendations about the issue, but they haven't done anything. And that is what has been the hallmark of the current administration.”
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, a Democrat, is seeking a third four-year term.
Anderson pointed to Amazon recently opening a retail outlet in Guilderland as an example of businesses shunning Albany for the suburbs.
"In the city of Albany if you're a man right now, and you need to purchase a pair of shoes, not sneakers, not boots, a regular pair of shoes for you to go to work in a business. You can't purchase one. There's not a men's store of any renown in the city limits."
Anderson called for "fast-track development" of Albany's 2030 plan, to shore up the city's business needs.
Anderson says he intends to participate in the Democratic primary, alongside previously declared candidates Black Lives Matter activist Lukee Forbes and Reverend Valerie Faust of Living Word Tabernacle, who also ran for mayor in 2009 and 2013.
Independent Greg Aidala of the city's West Hill neighborhood plans to challenge the winner of that primary in November.
"Clearly, those candidates have no record of service in the community. Prior to this year, where were they on the issues? Invisible.”
Explaining he "has a life, like everyone else," Anderson doesn't doesn’t think his flamboyant presence on social media should deter voters.
"I like to have a drink now and then, I like to have a good food now and then I like beautiful women, you know, but that has nothing to do with me being a leader."
Anderson claims this is his last run for political office.
"Whatever happens, this is going to be my last foray into Albany politics. Because as you know, and I've been a strong voice in this city for a very long time now, I've done everything I can to work towards the betterment of this city. And unfortunately, as the saying goes, 'you can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink.'"
Anderson says he has no intention of becoming a "perennial candidate."