Mayor de Blasio flew half way around the world — with his security detail on the taxpayers’ dime — in order to sing the city’s praises to protesters in Germany.
In a pair of speeches on Saturday, the mayor expressed gratitude to police, vowed to fight climate change — and even held up New York’s subway system as a metaphor for societal harmony.
Hizzoner ditched the Big Apple in favor of Hamburg for a few days to join demonstrators during the Group of 20 gathering of world leaders.
“We have a phrase in America we like to use: This is what democracy looks like,” de Blasio told a crowd of thousands, according to his spokesman.
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The burgermeister, mayor in German, was the keynote speaker at the “Hamburg Zeigt Haltung” rally. The name translates to “Hamburg Shows Attitude.”
But de Blasio, who received widespread condemnation for leaving a city grappling with the death of Police Officer Miosotis Familia, showed only understanding for local peace officers.
“Our right to protest is directly related to the fact that our police protect us,” the mayor said.
Hours earlier, masked rioters had clashed with police, burned cars and looted businesses. Police arrested 143 people, and 122 activists were temporarily detained. Some 213 officers were injured since the protests started Thursday night.
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De Blasio has had a tense relationship with police officers at home since his 2013 mayoral campaign. He was a vocal critic of the “stop and frisk” tactic and was accused by police unions of fueling anti-cop sentiment.
In Hamburg, tens of thousands of peaceful protesters took to the streets to demonstrate against the G20 summit on Saturday.
Protesters chanted, sang, danced and played music as world leaders wrapped up their two-day gathering in the German port city. Organizers said some 78,000 demonstrators participated, while police estimated the crowds at about 50,000.
De Blasio used the global platform to push back against President Trump’s decision to pull the U.S. out of the Paris climate accords.
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“American cities are signed on to the Paris Accords. We will do it ourselves,” he told the crowd.
Earlier in the day, de Blasio spoke at the Thalia Theater, also in Hamburg, where he took some poetic liberty as he described his hometown’s subways as a metaphor for working harmony in society.
“(You have) people of all faiths and people of all backgrounds,” de Blasio said on a video of the speech posted to Twitter. “And I like it as a metaphor because it’s not perfect, it’s not necessarily the way you want to live to be the sardine in the sardine can. But what you notice is there is a working harmony.”
De Blasio said he was invited to Germany about 11 days ago. But the trip was announced only hours before he took off on Thursday because he only decided to travel after making sure he would not miss Familia’s funeral, scheduled for Tuesday, he said.
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The mayor was roundly criticized for his quick flight from Gotham — with Republican mayoral candidate Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis of Staten Island tweeting a doctored photo of de Blasio wearing lederhosen and posing with beer and bratwurst.
De Blasio’s visit included a stop at Hamburg’s city hall, where he was joined by his son Dante.
With News Wire Services.
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