His two opponents, Ray McGuire and Shaun Donovan failed to guess the median cost of a home in Brooklyn, with both guessing around $100,000 or less when the correct price stands much higher at $900,000.
Impressively, Yang was the only candidate to guess correctly. He was also the only candidate to get that plus two other questions right, knowing that 10 percent of NYC schoolchildren who are homeless or in a temporary shelter and giving the correct figure for the median rent for a Manhattan apartment (guessing around $2,800 and $3,000 when it’s just under $3,000).
But, people are suspicious at the fact that Yang rambled on a bit before giving his answer, with some jumping to the conclusion that he was stalling intentionally to look up the answers online.
Here are his answers for each of the three questions put to him from the interview.
Yang on the homeless schoolchildren:
“Oh, gosh, I saw this number relatively recently, and it’s garishly high. I want to say there are — so there’s 60,000 people in the sheltering system. A lot of them are kids. But that’s too low a number. What is the category, Mara?’ Yang said, before being asked the question again.
‘Homeless or living in temporary shelter. So, I mean, the temporary shelter would be in the tens of thousands, and then homeless would be a similar number. We have about a million schoolkids. So I would say maybe 10 percent are homeless or in the shelters, would be my estimate.”
Yang on the Brooklyn median house price:
“Oh, my gosh. Brooklyn! Such a diverse place.”
“I know. I am the math guy. But this is, like, a median. This is, like, blowing my mind, this question. So median home — could be any size, right? So some of them would be very substantial. But you’re looking at the median, so you have to, like, whittle down.”
I would just say that the median — it’s going to be something, like, much higher than it should be. So the number that popped into my mind is $900,000.”
Yang on Manhattan median rent:
“Again, you’re looking at, like, you know, different types of apartments and all the rest of it. The number that’s popping into my head — I really should hone in on one-bedrooms because I figure that’s the median. Right. So, like a one-bedroom in Manhattan probably costs you — there’s been something of a decline — but the range in my head is, like, $2,800 to $3,000 a month.”
Sure, there’s a lot of rambling but there is no evidence that Yang cheated on the test.
But, that hasn’t stopped people from theorizing this - and even Shaun Donovan’s senior adviser wants tape of the Yang interview to be released following his own candidate’s poor performance on the quiz.
“The Times should release the video of his interview,” Rick Fromberg said to New York Magazine.
He added, “Andrew’s campaign should immediately release any correspondence he and they had during that time period.”
Candidate Scott Stringer’s adviser, Micah Lasher has also said it “seems hard to imagine” that Yang could answer all three questions perfectly without getting outside help.
Social media was buzzing with people speculating whether Yang cheated on the test or not.
@JonMunitz So apparently Andrew Yang cheated on a quiz
He should lose, for sure, if he did