New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at the USTA Indoor Training Center where a 350-bed temporary hospital will be built Tuesday, March 31, 2020, in New York. The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio attacked President Donald Trump, claiming that President Donald Trump and the Senate GOP were somehow holding up “direct aid” to the city.
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) April 20, 2020
In fact, both the GOP and Trump said they would be willing to look at that, but they were concentrating first on the small business program where the money had already run out, to save millions of American jobs because there was already an agreement as to the how to proceed with that, all they needed to do was refund it. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats have been blocking that. So de Blasio’s attack is lacking in context and honesty. Where is his chastisement of Pelosi for holding up aid to New York small businesses?
But it’s more than a little ironic. Because when this is all said and done, de Blasio, perhaps more than anyone else, may have a lot to answer for in terms of New York City’s reaction and the impact of the virus. New York and specifically New York City is the epicenter of the impact. There are a variety of possible reasons including density of population and the majority of folks using public transportation.
The NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association was not shy about who they pin at least some of the blame for that on.
NYC would NOT have been the epicenter if YOU didn’t keep schools open, tell people to go out enjoy the city, and the virus wasn’t something to worry about. If the city doesn’t have enough money, then put back the missing BILLION DOLLARS that your wife is unable to account for. https://t.co/C850PfkW9J
— SBA (@SBANYPD) April 20, 2020
But on March 5, de Blasio was still encouraging people to ride on the subway, even going on it himself to encourage people, showing him in a packed subway with no one wearing any protection.
Here he is on March 2, encouraging people to go to the theater.
Since I’m encouraging New Yorkers to go on with your lives + get out on the town despite Coronavirus, I thought I would offer some suggestions. Here’s the first: thru Thurs 3/5 go see “The Traitor” @FilmLinc. If “The Wire” was a true story + set in Italy, it would be this film.
— Bill de Blasio (@BilldeBlasio) March 3, 2020
Here he is on March 10, downplaying it saying there’s very little threat and for most people it acts like the “common cold” and he spreads other misinformation about transmission.
And here's Bill de Blasio on MARCH 10 literally encouraging everyone in NY to carry on normally. So, here's the bottom line. Due to China's and the WHO's cover-up/propaganda, no one in our gov't was taking COVID19 sufficiently seriously until around mid March. Period. pic.twitter.com/GVeVEBvGkR
— Bill Mc7 (@BillMc7) April 2, 2020
He didn’t even shut down the schools until the middle of March. And astonishingly, this whole time the New York City subway has still been running and people were riding it, without required protection up until Gov. Cuomo ordered that everyone should be wearing a mask outside last week. Some service has been shut down, thus making those in operation even more crowded.
De Blasio’s own people were, according to local reports, revolting against him because of what they felt was his lack of response.
The SBA also points to a story that not a lot of folks outside of New York are aware of, the reports were that there were questions about the program de Blasio’s wife headed, about what $850 million had been spent on.
Fortunately, New York may have turned the corner with hospitalizations leveled off so that’s hopeful for the future. But it’s really hard for de Blasio to have any standing to talk about anyone else’s response.