Bill de Blasio’s arrogance and continued stonewalling was on full display

Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, the common sense alternative to Bill de Blasio in the race for mayor, held a Thursday afternoon news conference at the Christopher Columbus Memorial at Columbus Circle to call out Bill de Blasio for his evasive performance during his Wednesday night debate with Sal Albanese, his challenger in next Tuesday’s Democratic Primary. During the debate, de Blasio continually dodged questions posed by the panel of reporters and his opponent Sal Albanese.

Malliotakis said about the mayor’s performance, “Bill de Blasio’s arrogance and continued stonewalling was on full display last night; de Blasio feels he doesn’t have to answer his opponent, the media or the people of New York City and that’s wrong. Our mayor doesn’t seem to understand that when you are elected to public office you become answerable to the public and the media. This isn’t something that’s open for debate, it’s simply the way we operate in a democracy. On the topic of the Columbus statue and de Blasio’s statue review panel, Malliotakis quipped, “I really think Bill de Blasio should go back to using his birth name of Warren Wilhelm, because he obviously doesn’t have the heart and soul of an Italian.”

Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis said, “Bill de Blasio’s proposed purging of our statues is like ripping pages out of a history book. These statues were erected because they memorialize people and events that changed the course of history. For Bill de Blasio and his yet unnamed panel to decide who stays and who goes is simply ridiculous.

“On August 16th, Bill de Blasio announced his intentions of starting a review of ‘all symbols of hate on city property’. Last night he once again dodged questions related to the review. Over the course of his first term, Bill de Blasio has spoken out on many topics, whether here in New York City or on his numerous trips across the country or around the world yet he refuses to say whether he will remove the Christopher Columbus statue if his panel recommends it.

“The questions for Bill de Blasio are simple; do you believe that Christopher Columbus is a symbol of hate and will you take action to remove his statue from Columbus Circle? Both questions can be answered with a simple yes or no.

“Of equal importance were the questions posed about the pay-to-play, transactional type of governance that is so prevalent in the de Blasio administration. Last Friday, as New Yorkers were focused on the long Labor Day weekend, Mayor de Blasio released his long awaited Op-Ed defending his administration’s involvement in transactional dealings with donors to his campaign and non-profits. Frankly, his Op-Ed was a whole lot of nothing, except for being another example of his disdain for the media and the voters.

“Bill de Blasio must be held accountable in the 2 months between now and the election. The voters need to know where he stands on each and every issue and he needs to become transparent over the allegations of pay-to-play within his administration. In the weeks ahead, I will continue to hold the mayor accountable on behalf of all New Yorkers.