This “Sopranos” star is offering Brooklyn voters a candidate they can’t refuse.
Brooklyn-born-and-bred actor Steve Schirripa, best known as toy train-loving mobster Bobby “Bacala” Baccalieri on the hit show, has taken on a new role as a political operative.
Schirripa, 63, has quietly begun making phone calls to registered voters and hanging campaign signs in his old neighborhood of Bensonhurst to support 24-year political neophyte Steven Patzer, who seeks an upset win in a highly competitive race in southern Brooklyn to succeed term-limited Councilman Mark Treyger.
“I’m not a political guy in the least bit, but I am looking for a guy who takes care of business, and this kid does,” said the tough-talking actor.
“I grew up there, and he’s doing some good stuff. He’s not a politician, which is what I like about him.”
Schirripa, who now co-stars with Tom Selleck on “Blue Bloods,” said he was impressed by the young pol’s volunteer work during the coronavirus crisis. This included picking up and personally delivering 6,000 donated food care-packages to seniors, and leaving behind business cards in case they needed more assistance.
“I think this kid is right for the job,” Schirripa said. “I think Bill de Blasio is a bad mayor and made a mess of this city, and I think he can combat that.
“I might be a busy man, but I’ll make some phone calls for him.”
Schirripa, who now lives in Lower Manhattan, said he was introduced to Patzer through the candidate’s spokeswoman, Reyna Gobel. The actor and Gobel are longtime friends, having met two decades ago in Las Vegas when she was a comedy-review writer and he was entertainment director for the legendary Riviera Hotel.
Schirripa said he still keeps in touch with other members of “The Sopranos” cast, including actor Michael Imperioli, with whom he does a popular podcast called “Talking Sopranos.”
Patzer said he’s excited to have Schirripa’s star power behind him.
“If you knock on doors in Gravesend or Bensonhurst, one out of every two doors knows who Steve Schirripa is but also knows what high school he went to,” said Patzer. “He’s a good guy.” (Schirripa attended LaFayette HS.)
Patzer, a web developer who grew up in the Georgetown section of southern Brooklyn, moved to Gravesend two years ago to meet residency requirements for the 47th Council District. He previously worked as an advocate for the Jewish human rights group Simon Wiesenthal Center.
Also running in June’s Democratic primary for the council seat, which includes Coney Island, are former state Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny and Ari Kagan, a longtime aide to Treyger who will likely be backed by the exiting councilman.
As of July, Patzer had outraised his opposition by collecting $20,550 in donations and having $12,250 on hand.
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