Our former colleague and Buckley fellow Alec Torres has a great in-depth look into the activist powerbrokers and union chiefs that helped lift Bill de Blasio to the New York mayorship. Thanks to efforts by the SEIU 1199, the Working Families Party, and “community organizations reborn from ACORN,” among others, de Blasio became the city’s first Democratic mayor in two decades, and now many of these allies find themselves in various positions in his administration.
It was the first time in exactly 20 years that the city had a Democratic mayor. But de Blasio is not merely a Democrat, nor even a traditional JFK-type liberal, but a self-described and unabashed Progressive. His mayoral campaign revolved around a Tale of Two Cities narrative: there is a rich New York and a poor and exploited New York, and the latter requires more and bigger government to succeed. “Inequality” was the buzzword of de Blasio’s campaign, and the casual observer would have been led to believe that the greatest threat facing the average New Yorker was the fact that someone else in New York earned more money than he did.
After 20 years of rule under Rudy Giuliani, a Republican, and Michael Bloomberg, a Republican-turned-independent, the leftists in a city known for its leftism burst forth with pent up energy. Now the city’s highest offices—elected and unelected—are filled with Progressives, who have little respect for constitutions and other limitations on government power.
De Blasio and the government he directs do not draw principal support from Wall Street or from the media, as was the case in recent administrations. Their friends are the likes of the Service Employees International Union Local 1199 (SEIU 1199), New York City’s largest and most powerful union, and community organizations reborn from ACORN. De Blasio’s mayoral campaign, as well as his rise to every public office he’s held, were heavily backed by unions and left-wing groups with ideologies and ends so similar to his as to be indistinguishable.
For the entire piece, click here.