Last weekend, the mayor flew to Iowa, where he reportedly met with small crowds of Democrats. He boasted about his achievements in New York, including universal pre-kindergarten, paid sick leave and expanding health care access.
Over and over again, de Blasio has been asked about his presidential aspirations. Playing coy, the mayor has repeatedly given the same answer: “I’m not ruling it out.”
But while de Blasio tries to exert his influence on the national stage –– we all saw how that played out in 2016 with his failed Iowa forum –– New Yorkers are suffering from multiple issues.
The affordability and housing crisis has produced record-high homelessness that has no end in sight. The public transportation system is crumbling before our eyes, with riders set back by daily delays.
Public housing residents have suffered winters without sufficient heat or hot water. The administration’s handling of lead paint was so bad it forced the resignation of top officials. Now, a federal monitor has been appointed to oversee NYCHA.
Those are just the top-line items. The mayor still hasn’t tackled segregation in our public school system. He hasn’t addressed community concerns about the timeline and process of closing Rikers Island.
All of these issues, and more, deserve the attention of a full-time mayor. If de Blasio wants to fulfill his second-term promise of making New York the “fairest big city” in America, he should stay put.
Every other politician agrees. At a recent debate for public advocate, every candidate said de Blasio shouldn’t run for president.
Assemblyman Ron Kim put it best when he said, “Come back to us, mayor, we need you here.”