NYC mayor's "pizzagate" could mean real dough for charity

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Story highlights

  • To the "gates" of political lore, add one for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio: pizzagate
  • The new mayor was photographed chowing down in a pizzeria, using a knife and fork
  • Now the pizzeria owner wants to auction the infamous fork for charity
  • De Blasio's office is all for it: "We hope they include the knife to raise even more funds"

Mayor Bill de Blasio bit into some unexpected publicity recently when he was photographed politely eating pizza -- with a knife and fork.

At a Staten Island pizzeria, no less.

Now, the act that sent the Internet into a frenzy with chatter about what most New Yorkers scorn as a serious food flub portends to deliver some dough -- as in money -- to charity.

Goodfella's Pizzeria co-owner Marc Cosentino says he will auction off the infamous fork that de Blasio used in a charity fundraiser.

After the mayor and his entourage went their way following a Friday stop at Goodfella's, Cosentino decided it would be a good idea to hold on to the notorious fork.

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A retired NYPD sergeant, Cosentino baked up the idea to store the fork in an evidence bag and put it on display at the bar.

"You can't imagine all the people that come in that want to look at the fork and take pictures of it," Cosentino told CNN on Wednesday.

    Dubbed by some with tongues firmly in cheek as the new mayor's "pizzagate," the ensuing publicity has prompted multiple charities to reach out to Cosentino in hopes of getting a piece of the pie.

    When asked how much he thinks the renowned utensil would sell for, Cosentino referred to a previous charity benefit in 2013 for New York's hungry when a dozen "cronuts" -- half-croissant and half-doughnut pastries -- reportedly were auctioned for $14,000.

    "I think we can beat that," Cosentino proudly said.

    As for the mayor with manners, his office released a statement to CNN giving the idea of a charity auction an extra topping. "We hope they include the knife to raise even more funds," the statement said.

    Will de Blasio be welcomed back in Goodfella's Pizzeria following what some consider a pizza faux pas?

    "Absolutely! He was a total gentleman," Cosentino declared. "As long as people are eating pizza it's okay with me."

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