The Corner

Politics & Policy

Bill de Blasio: Why Does Everybody Hate Me?

Mayor Bill De Blasio hugs his wife Chirlane McCray after dropping the ball on New Year’s Day in Times Square, New York City, January 1, 2021. (Gary Hershorn/Reuters Pool)

In his final hours before he becomes a lame-duck mayor, Bill de Blasio took a sympathetic Politico reporter along with him for an afternoon. In a piece entitled, “Bill de Blasio Has Some Regrets,” he does a little soul-searching whose subtext is pretty plain. De Blasio still doesn’t get why New Yorkers hate him.

De Blasio won election in 2013, and reelection in 2017, by huge margins, but he was essentially given an eight-year term by garnering 40 percent of the Democratic Party primary vote in 2013, which in turn he won because people liked his son Dante’s TV commercial. The four percent of New Yorkers who voted for him in that primary are the ones to blame for eight years in which the city visibly decayed, homelessness and street garbage became defining features of the landscape for the first time in a generation, crime continued falling for a while then suddenly spiked, and de Blasio seemed to think his job was to insult police, let criminals out of prison, stop prosecuting minor offenses, direct a billion dollars to a mental-health boondoggle to give his wife something to do, sleep late and concentrate on being a sort of philosopher-prince of leftism. Everyone already hated him before he departed the city to run an absurd presidential campaign during which he never had a prayer of even getting into the first tier of candidates.

It’s pretty easy to imagine this scenario, reported by Politico, happening to de Blasio virtually every time he appears in public. In Prospect Park, Brooklyn, in one of the most famously progressive neighborhoods in America, “de Blasio is barely in sight before the father stops, spots the mayor, and yells: ‘No one wants you! You’re the worst. You’re the WORST!’ His son watches in silence. ‘I CAN’T WAIT FOR YOU TO GET OUT.'” De Blasio’s response was to wave and say, “Have a nice day!”

De Blasio (who hasn’t endorsed anyone in the race to succeed him; the Democratic primary, which is tantamount to a general election here, is today), is telling himself that New Yorkers dislike him because he goes for walks rather than for his gross incompetence. “So if my sin is, I go for walks, I’m like, really? Think about that! The thing that makes people upset is [me] going for walks.” His political career is over at the end of the year. His last full day in office will be New Year’s Eve, and the image of him and his wife dancing with merry oblivion in an otherwise deserted Times Square last New Year’s will, for many, be the defining image of his failed mayoralty. Good riddance, jackass.

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