By Kevin Zimmerman
Dozens of Queens Democratic officials piled onto the steps at Borough Hall Monday afternoon to unify literally and figuratively behind Bill de Blasio in his bid for City Hall.
The Democratic nominee acknowledged some of those people standing with him Monday were longtime supporters while others were new to his campaign’s fold. But whose corner they stood in two weeks ago doesn’t matter as much as where they stood today, he said.
“Everyone I have spoken to desires unity,” de Blasio said. “And they desire the Democratic Party to rightfully provide leadership again in City Hall.”
De Blasio’s appearance was officially labeled an endorsement by the Queens County Democrats, who turned out in force to support him.
“Bill is someone who will fight tirelessly for all New Yorkers, not just some,” said U.S. Rep. Joe Crowley (D-Jackson Heights), who serves as chairman of the Queens County Democrats and originally supported Christine Quinn for mayor. “He understands the many challenges our diverse communities face and will bridge the inequalities in our city while strengthening the middle class. As Queens Democrats, we are proud to support Bill de Blasio as our next mayor.”
The mayoral candidate thanked the county Democrats who stood with him offering their support. But he also used the event as a forum to hit his campaign’s key points.
“We don’t accept the notion of a tale of two cities,” said de Blasio. “We don’t think that is the way things are meant to be.”
De Blasio believes New Yorkers don’t want to see hospitals shut down and turned into luxury condos. He wants to work to ensure local restaurants and retails shops aren’t fined out of business. And, he promises stopping residents of color for a police patdown will never be allowed to happen again under his watch.
“This election is about whose side you’re on,” said de Blasio. “I’m on the side of the middle class, the working class and the poor in all five boroughs.”
De Blasio, a Brooklyn resident, emphasized New York City is much more than the Borough of Manhattan. He believes that is a concept the current administration never grasped.
“The mayor has to spend time here on the ground with the people to understand them and their concerns,” said de Blasio. “The energy and unity you see today is not just in the abstract. I’m standing with people who know how to reach out to voters.”
Reach News Editor Kevin Zimmerman at 718-260-4541 or at [email protected]