After months of publicly toying with a run for president, Mayor Bill de Blasio made it official: He announced his candidacy for the 2020 election in a YouTube video, which he later followed up with an appearance on Good Morning America, with wife Chirlane McCray by his side.
“It doesn’t matter if you live in a city or a rural area, big state or small state, doesn’t matter what your ethnicity is,” he says in a YouTube video introducing his campaign. “People in every part of this country feel stuck or even like they’re going backwards.”
But if polling is any indication, New Yorkers are less than enthused about a de Blasio campaign. A Quinnipiac poll from early April found that 76 percent of registered NYC voters think he should not run for president—a “rare moment of unity” for city dwellers, as one polling analyst told the Wall Street Journal. Early reactions on Twitter and elsewhere in the city are also not exactly positive.
Here’s how New Yorkers (including President Donald Trump) are reacting.
First, the tabloids:
Today's cover: Bill de Blasio officially launches 2020 presidential campaign pic.twitter.com/g973kWfGJ3— New York Post (@nypost) May 16, 2019
The New York Daily News did not mention de Blasio’s run on its Thursday cover.
President Donald Trump tweeted his reaction, saying that “NYC HATES HIM!” (and, in fairness, around 75 percent of New Yorkers surveyed in an April poll said they did not want de Blasio to run for president.)
The Dems are getting another beauty to join their group. Bill de Blasio of NYC, considered the worst mayor in the U.S., will supposedly be making an announcement for president today. He is a JOKE, but if you like high taxes & crime, he’s your man. NYC HATES HIM!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 16, 2019
A spokesperson for City Council speaker Corey Johnson, who announced earlier this year that he’ll run for mayor in 2021, directed Curbed to previous comments the speaker made at a press conference on May 8, when asked if any current resident of the five boroughs should run for president: “I don’t know currently if she lives in LA or New York, but I love Lady Gaga.”
In a statement to Curbed, Comptroller Scott Stringer—who is also vying to be mayor in the 2021 race—said, “I wish the Mayor the best of luck in this endeavor, but it’s important that the presidential campaign doesn’t detract from the critical issues facing New York. We must remain laser-focused on solving problems and delivering results for New Yorkers.”
Public advocate Jumaane Williams—who is, by law, next in line for mayor—echoed Stringer’s sentiment, telling Good Day New York that “for quite some time, both eyes haven’t been on being the mayor of the city New York, and that’s been a problem for me.”
Protestors gathered outside of the Good Morning America studio in Times Square on Thursday morning:
New York, New York! It’s a helluva town! #BDB2020 pic.twitter.com/GWZ7x8r9X0— katie honan (@katie_honan) May 16, 2019
Other signs read “Repair @NYCHA “ & “DeBlasio Step Up or Step Down.” pic.twitter.com/zEZT270A2Q— Edgar Sandoval (@edjsandoval) May 16, 2019
Opinion pieces are also starting to roll in: Streetsblog NYC, citing the mayor’s record on transit and safe streets issues, called on de Blasio to resign:
The mayoralty of New York City is often said to be the second most important job in the country. It needs someone in the west wing of City Hall who shows up to work every day (perhaps even after a gym workout) with 100 percent focus on the lives of his fellow New Yorkers.
I see de Blasio is on his way to his campaign announcement pic.twitter.com/RVcIbPOJfj— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) May 16, 2019
The scene from "Spider-Man" where all the New Yorkers throw stuff at the Green Goblin and tell him "You leave Spidah-Man alone ya piece a' shit, we're New Yorkers" but it's the same people telling de Blasio not to run for president— Good Idea Dave (@DaveCoIon) May 16, 2019
The most surreal part of the video is that he seems to zip around the city with ease. Look, America! No traffic! https://t.co/GLiQSSSf37— Grace Rauh (@gracerauh) May 16, 2019
Is de Blasio Too Tall to Be President? pic.twitter.com/PFnCgLoJ6g— Christopher Bonanos (@heybonanos) May 16, 2019
We’ve also reached out to city officials, and will update with any new information (or statements) that come in.