New York City mayor Bill de Blasio on Thursday announced a run for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020, joining a large field of 22 other candidates.
“As president I will take on the wealthy. I will take on the corporations. I will not rest until this government serves working people,” de Blasio said in his announcement video message. “Doesn’t matter if you live in a city or a rural area, a big state, small state. Doesn’t matter what your ethnicity is. People in every part of this country felt stuck or even like they’re going backwards.”
De Blasio reminded voters that he raised New York City’s minimum wage to $15 per hour and fought to provide workers with guaranteed paid sick leave and health care. He also touted that New York sent lawyers to the border to assist undocumented immigrants in dealing with the Trump administration and took steps to fight climate change when Trump pulled out of the Paris climate agreement.
The Democratic mayor, who is serving his second term, also did not mince words on the current president, calling President Trump a “bully” and saying he “must be stopped.”
“I’m a New Yorker. I’ve known Trump’s a bully for a long time,” de Blasio said. “I know how to take him on. Don’t back down in the face of a bully, confront him . . . I’ve beaten him before and I will do it again.”
Trump wasted no time clapping back at the mayor of his home city, tweeting that de Blasio is the “worst mayor in the U.S.,” and New York City “hates him.”
“He is a JOKE, but if you like high taxes & crime, he’s your man,” the president wrote.
Over three-fourths of New York City voters said de Blasio should not bother running for president, according to a Quinnipiac University poll.
“Bill de Blasio is a liberal extremist who wants the government to control everything from your health care to what you eat,” Republican National Committee Communications director Michael Ahrens said in a statement. “Americans can rest assured that he won’t win, but unfortunately his socialist policies fit right in with the rest of his comrades in the race.”
The new presidential candidate plans to hit the campaign trail Thursday in Iowa and will travel to South Carolina this weekend.