If only the expression three strikes and you are out were for real. If that were the case, last week would have been Mayor de Blasio’s last week in office. But, of course, we will not be that fortunate.
In a matter of just a few days, de Blasio encouraged demonstrators to continue to disrupt New York City, made it clear that he did not care if midtown businesses were hurt during the holidays and used his hour with the president-elect to tell him that New Yorkers are fearful of him.
On the last point, de Blasio does not speak for the many New Yorkers who voted for Trump or for that matter the likely majority of voters who simply wanted to make a different choice.
Personally, I think after 12 months of hot political rhetoric, the mayor could have used his one hour with the president-elect who certainly knows New York City better than any president since Theodore Roosevelt to discuss ways of helping our city.
His flippant attitude towards midtown businesses during the holiday season, which goes well beyond the Tiffany or Saks Fifth Avenue windows, I found particularly disturbing. The mayor should be looking for transportation solutions that will allow the “Northern White House” and midtown to co-exist for the foreseeable future.
I understand that these changes will take some time to design and implement, but the right answer from de Blasio should have been that this is our priority. His public posture should be that he and the president-elect disagree on most public policy issues, but that he is proud that the next president of the United States is a born-and-bred New Yorker and looks forward to his frequent returns home.
I wonder if it is good for the shattered national Democratic Party to have Brooklyn’s Senator Charles Schumer as its de facto leader. Schumer wants to work with President-elect Trump, someone whom he has known personally for many, many years.
That is good for the nation and frankly pleases me since we have now a great opportunity to bring about the changes Trump made a hallmark of his campaign.
On the other hand, the Democratic Party for its part might need a more aggressive attack dog calling the shots. The national election was razor close, so some Americans are clearly more interested in fighting the new administration vs. working with it.
That leader might emerge in the House of Representatives when the Democrats gather to elect their minority leader. As of this writing, Nancy Pelosi is running for re-election.
She is not up to the task of representing their interests in a Trump world. She has one announced opponent with likely more to declare in the next few days. This will be an interesting battle and will be very telling in terms of the near future of the Democratic Party.
The New York Republican Party came out of the election a winner. The party, criticized for sending funds into Pennsylvania to assist pro-Trump efforts with mailings, now has a whole new spin on its efforts. And it held two important Congressional seats with two new members who I think will better represent the party in Washington – Claudia Tenney and John Faso.
It also held everything else and in all likelihood increased its majority in the New York Senate by a seat. That is, of course, good for Republican-Conservative State Senator Marty Golden (whom I serve as chief of staff). Returning for his eighth term, Golden — who was already considered quite influential in Albany — should enjoy an expanded leadership role.
And let it not be said that Jerry Kassar wrote a column in which he mentioned the Republican Party and not the Conservative Party. It should be noted that all re-elected New York State Republican Senators in Nassau County won by the margin of their Conservative Party vote.