Published in
The Empire

positioning a 2013 mayoral candidate

The borough president and un-announced 2013 mayoral candidate Scott Stringer. (azi paybarah / wnyc)

Justin Krebs explains Scott Stringer's speech yesterday :

Mayor Bloomberg didn’t need to be called out by name for everyone to understand at whom this salvo was aimed. After a decade of decision-making that rarely welcomed and often ignored public comment, it’s not just a narrow sliver of jilted parents, ideological progressives and good government groups who are tired of the mayor’s style. The controversy following Cathie Black’s appointment was as much about the secretive process as about the ill-prepared appointee. Following the questions about the mayor’s whereabouts during the December blizzard, City Council is considering legislation that require him to “sign out” when he leaves the city. Even the mayor sensed the public’s restlessness, which is why he dedicated real estate in his own annual address to the concept of “crowdsourcing,” suggesting he was more willing to listen to the public.

Stringer doesn’t need to run against Mayor Bloomberg, which is fortunate for him. Even the pugnacious Anthony Weiner was finally intimidated by Bloomberg’s moneyed and massive campaign machine last time around. But New Yorkers are ready for more elected officials to challenge the mayor. The Progressive Caucus of the City Council has been finding its voice. The Public Advocate had been vocal in calling out the mayor over the past two months of controversies. And Borough President Stringer — while being careful not to paint the mayor as an adversary, and while being respectful of what Bloomberg has achieved — has laid out a different approach to governing that New Yorkers need to remember can exist.