Politician’s claim as tallest draws quick challenges

<p>
              New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, left, awards N.Y. City Councilman Robert Cornegy, Jr. the Guinness World Record's tallest male politician, Wednesday March 27, 2019, at City Hall in New York. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
            </p>

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — It didn’t take long for a New York City councilman’s claim that he’s the world’s tallest male politician to draw some challenges.

Robert Cornegy Jr., a 6-foot-10 (208 centimeter) councilman from Brooklyn, was certified by Guinness World Records in January and honored for the distinction this week at a City Hall ceremony.

But North Dakota’s insurance commissioner, Jon Godfread, quickly stepped forward to say he will contest the title. Godfread, who played basketball at the University of Northern Iowa and played professionally in Germany, says he’s 6-11¾ (212 centimeters).

Brad Sellers, a former Ohio State and Chicago Bulls star listed at 7 feet (213 centimeters), also says he has a claim. Sellers is the mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio.

Former NBA basketball player Yao Ming could top them all. Yao is a delegate in the advisory body to China’s National People’s Congress. He is listed at 7-feet-6 (228.6-centimeters).

Godfread says he didn’t know “being a tall politician was a thing.”