New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio addresses the Global Action Climate Summit Friday, Sept. 14, 2018, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
Apparently there’s one set of rules for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and another set of rules for everyone else.
The failed presidential candidate was spotted making a trip to a local gym on Monday morning, one he has often made. But this one came three days after he declared a state of emergency for the city and put restrictions on public gatherings and other events. City restaurants and bars are also now required to be pick-up or delivery only – and they could face arrest if they don’t comply, and the city’s public schools have been shut down.
But according to the mayor’s office, he just needed to visit the gym “one last time” even though social distancing rules for everyone else were already in effect:
Broadway is dark, the city’s 1.1 million public school students are home from school, and the Big Apple’s 27,000 restaurants will close their doors to diners Tuesday — but none of those warnings could keep Mayor Bill de Blasio from a trip to his favorite public gym in Brooklyn on Monday morning.
“Text I just received (from someone who is definitely not making this up): ‘I just walked by DeBlasio [sic] going into the Y to work out so YOLO?’” a Twitter user named Teddy Goff wrote at 10:08 a.m.
It’s true. Here’s a photo showing him arriving at the gym:
— New York Post (@nypost) March 16, 2020
The excuses from his office were – in a word – laughable:
Freddi Goldstein, the mayor’s press secretary, said the mayor has a strong emotional connection to the Y, which is located a few blocks from the Park Slope home where he raised his two kids with his wife, Chirlane McCray.
“The YMCA has been a huge part of his and his family’s life, like it has been for a lot of New Yorkers. It’s clear that’s about to change and before that, the mayor wanted to visit a place that keeps him grounded one last time,” Goldstein said.
“That doesn’t change the fact that he is working around the clock to ensure the safety of New Yorkers. After today, gyms will close and he will no longer be visiting the YMCA for the foreseeable future.”
And from de Blasio himself:
“There was almost no one there. I had heard that information prior,” he said. “I suspected that we were all going to be about to close them down, and this would be the last time to get some exercise.”
The mayor added that he didn’t get to exercise “whatsoever” during the weekend because he was “in this building.” De Blasio said that he will find a “new way” to exercise “going forward.”
“I did not think for a moment there was anything problematic because I knew the dynamics,” he said. “And again, I have to stay healthy so I can make the decisions for the people of this city.”
But the worst thing of all about his trip to the gym is the possibility he didn’t wipe down his equipment after use:
Meanwhile, local residents near the gym have complained that the mayor often does not wipe down the gym equipment after he uses it — behavior that has been linked to the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
You simply cannot make this stuff up. Unbelievable.
The controversy surrounding de Blasio’s apparent double standard on social distancing comes just days after he embarrassingly gave out the wrong information on whether or not to self-quarantine to a concerned citizen on New York City’s 311 helpline. De Blasio has also called for a “nationalization of crucial factories and industries” in response to the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak.