Donald Trump has a knack for rubbing folks the wrong way. Count New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio in that bunch, as the duly elected leader of metropolis found it incumbent to comment on one of the Donald’s most outrageous comments to date despite the fact that his city is currently in the grip of a history making storm.
As previously reported by CNN and other outlets, Donald Trump recently made the jaw-dropping assertion that he could murder someone in downtown New York and still come out on top in the present election cycle.
“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters,” Trump said at an appearance in Sioux City, Iowa, on Saturday. After the rally, he would not answer any questions from reporters about his outrageous statement. People Magazine noted that after he made the statement, Trump mimed a pistol with his hand and acted like he was firing shots.
On Sunday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio reacted, blasting the GOP frontrunner during an appearance on ABC’s This Week. His comments were re-published by the New York Daily News.
“It’s incredibly insensitive. We had a moment in our nation’s history we’re talking about how to deal with the scourge of gun violence. And for someone who says he wants to be president to say that, it shows he’s just not presidential.”
Mayor de Blasio also said that Trump’s comments were a good indication of his arrogance, sharing his opinion that the billionaire candidate is “not ready for primetime.”
For what it’s worth, Donald Trump himself made a few appearances on the Sunday morning talk show circuit, including a stop on the CBS show Face the Nation in which he did not back down from his “shoot somebody” quip.
“These are people that just won’t leave, they will not leave,” Trump said in comments transcribed by The Wrap. “It’s a great thing. Far greater loyalty than any other candidate by double, triple, quadruple — and I love my people.”
Donald Trump has tangled with mayor de Blasio in the past, calling the New York Democrat “the worst mayor in the U.S.” late last year. Trump’s comments came just days after de Blasio called him a “blowhard” during a radio interview. The two weren’t always rivals, though. Conservative outlet Red State notes that Trump once complemented de Blasio as “a smart guy” who wanted to “make New York great.” These days, Trump downplays those comments – apparently made two years ago – by explaining that he was merely “rooting” for de Blasio, but not endorsing him at the time.
The rather odd history of public courting and critique between Donald Trump and Bill de Blasio has not gone unnoticed by Trump’s chief Rival Ted Cruz. The Cruz campaign seized upon Trump’s above-noted praise of de Blasio, using the comments in an ad that built upon Cruz’s assertions that the real estate mogul views “New York values” as more important than conservatism. The commercial spot, which aired during installments of talk radio programs, tied Trump to de Blasio and then picked apart the mayor’s major positions to depict him as an enemy of conservatives.
“De Blasio ran on class warfare, sanctuary cities and ending stop-and-frisk. De Blasio sided with looters and cop-killers against the police, with teachers unions against schoolchildren, and with PC liberals to let the homeless run wild on city streets.”
The wrangling between de Blasio and Trump is likely far from over, too. If anything, de Blasio’s most recent repudiation of Trump seems to effectively counter the Cruz camp’s efforts to paint both men with the same brush. And although Cruz and Trump are running neck-and-neck in Iowa, Donald Trump is the clear frontrunner in the primaries that follow, ensuring that he will remain a likely topic of discussion by de Blasio and many others for months and months to come.
[Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images]