The Tall Man Cometh
Of Real Estate and Politics
Bill de Blasio, fresh off his overwhelming victory last week, marched in today’s Veterans Day parade as the newly-minted mayor-elect, greeting a bevy of fans and the occasional heckler on Fifth Avenue.
Mr. de Blasio, the son of a World War II veteran, began the morning speaking at a Veterans Day wreath laying ceremony at Madison Square Park and then set off on the march, where he was greeted by a mostly eager crowd. Along the route, he stopped–occasionally to a policeman’s chagrin–to shake hands with admirers. But a few individuals also loudly booed the Democrat from the sidelines–although that didn’t slow down the next mayor’s stride.
The political divide that runs down the middle of Central Park, dividing the very blue Upper West Side from the very red Upper East is considered as unyielding and insuperable as the Berlin Wall. During the last presidential election, the top two fundraising zip codes for both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney were on the Upper West Side (10024) and Upper East Side (10021) respectively, an ideological division that has held fast all these years despite all that is shared between the fabulously wealthy residents who live in the sprawling, pre-war co-ops lining either side of the Park.
However, as the results of the most recent mayor’s race reveal, the political leanings of the East and West sides are not as uniform as they seem at first blush—in fact, during an analysis of The New York Times‘ election district results, The Observer discovered that there are some surprising bastions of conservatism in a few of Central Park West’s most storied buildings (alas, no corresponding pockets of liberalism can be found in the posh precincts that radiate out from Fifth Avenue).
Bill de Blasio, elected the city’s 109th mayor yesterday, met with outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg in City Hall this morning to discuss his transition to the powerful office.
Mr. Bloomberg, who endorsed no one in the race, congratulated the Democrat after his overwhelming victory last night–signaling that the billionaire mayor would likely facilitate a cordial transition for Mr. de Blasio.
Bill de Blasio tarred Joe Lhota for his close association with former Mayor Rudy Giuliani at a Queens rally in support of the Democrat’s mayoral bid today, slamming his Republican rival in a neighborhood where few recall the ex-mayor fondly.
While speaking at a canvassing kickoff event in the predominately black Rochdale Village, Mr. de Blasio egged on his supporters by name-dropping Mr. Giuliani twice–eliciting boos each time.
It was a tale of two subway stops.
Bill de Blasio defended his campaign manager tonight after the aide insulted reporters for highlighting a 1-year-old Twitter post from Mr. de Blasio’s own account that mentioned where his daughter, Chiara, attended college.
The Joys of Literature
Two days before Halloween, Joe Lhota thinks his Democratic rival has too many spooky ideas.
“We’ve gotta talk about his vision for the future versus my vision for the future. You know why he doesn’t talk about his vision for the future? It reminds everybody of Halloween. His vision will scare people, overall, and where he wants to take this city,” Mr. Lhota told WOR’s John Gambling this morning.
Blast From The Past
The mayoral race today went from ferocious to bookish.
At an immigration rally on the steps of City Hall, the race’s front-runner, Bill de Blasio, repeatedly flaunted his 69-page policy booklet, waving and leafing through his raft of proposals as a way to demonstrate to the press–and his Republican rival, Joe Lhota, who was not present–that he is indeed a candidate of big ideas.
New Kids on the Bloc
Republican Joe Lhota claimed today that a young Bill de Blasio mishandled the Crown Heights riots more than 20 years ago, withholding crucial information from a top deputy to then-Mayor David Dinkins.
Mr. Lhota didn’t say what information his front-running rival allegedly failed to disclose, but insisted Mr. de Blasio’s experience during the Crown Heights demonstrated that he is ill-prepared to govern the city.
With just three weeks to go before Election Day, Muslim leaders and activists gathered in Brooklyn to rally for Bill de Blasio today, hoping their various grievances with the Bloomberg administration would be addressed by a more sympathetic mayor.