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New York gubernatorial candidate Jimmy McMillan, of the Rent is Too2 Damn High Party, participates in a debate held at Hoftstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., Monday, Oct. 18, 2010. / Audrey Tiernan, AP

His message as he ran for governor of New York was simple: "The rent is too damn high."

Now, four years later, Jimmy McMillan of the involved moustache and viral campaign slogan that set off a parade of memes is back. When the Brooklyn, N.Y., resident ran back in 2010, he said he was doing it because, "The rent is too damn high."

A statement released Monday by The Rent is Too Damn High Party, founded by the 67-year-old McMillan, blamed "poor management" and "spineless politicians" for high rents throughout the state.

"The reason the rent is too damn high is because we have the most expensive government in the entire nation and pay the most taxes," McMillan, a former postal worker and Vietnam War veteran, said in a statement.

The Rent is Too Damn High Party announced Monday that it is forwarding two statewide candidates, McMillan for governor and Greg Fischer for comptroller.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's re-election campaign did not respond to a telephone message or to a direct tweet. Cuomo's campaign says that the governor has addressed taxes in the state, leading to "the lowest middle income tax rate since 1953."

McMillan has twice run for mayor of New York City, Two other times, he sought the governor's seat; he captured the most attention in 2010, when going up against front-runners Andrew Cuomo and Buffalo businessman Carl Paladino.

A report from the Tax Foundation said that in 2011, residents of New York and New Jersey paid more than 12% of their incomes toward state and local taxes - the highest in the country. A 2013 Census study of city rents from 2010 to 2012 showed that while New York City median rents are not the highest nationwide, they are among the highest. San Francisco topped the list with a median rent of $1,463. New York came in behind not only San Francisco, but also San Jose, Boston and Washington, with a median of $1,187, according to the Census Bureau. However, a report released in March by New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli showed that almost 51% of rental households in the state were paying rents above the affordability level.



Copyright 2014USAToday

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