Bill de Blasio Exits the 2020 Democratic Presidential Race
Plus: The UAW is on strike, Josh Hawley meets with Mark Zuckerberg, and more...
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has bid farewell to his presidential campaign. The longshot candidate withdrew from the Democratic primaries Friday morning, admitting on MSNBC that "it's just not my time."
This should not be surprising news, given that de Blasio is one of the most widely reviled political figures around. Unlike virtually every other Democrat running for candidate, de Blasio became more unpopular as he became better known. He's despised in New York City, even by Democrats.
The mayor is known for being a nanny's nanny: He wants local governments to arbitrarily ban pretty much everything that offends progressives. He proposed a federal tax on robots, wants to eliminate classes for gifted children in the name of equality (Harrison Bergeron alert), called for breaking up corporations "when they're not serving our democracy," and even tried to rid New York City of ice cream trucks in the name of "public safety."
Of the campaign's end, de Blasio writes:
This campaign has been a profound experience for me. I saw America in full—not as it appears on Twitter and cable news, where we're constantly shown a country hamstrung by our differences and unable to tackle the problems we face. We have more in common than we realize—and more and more of us across the country are overcoming our divisions and standing up for working people….
I'm going to redouble my efforts to improve the quality of life of everyday New Yorkers, proving that policies like guaranteed paid personal time off can work on a grand scale. I'm going to continue implementing universal health care and a Green New Deal in the nation's largest city. And I promise I'll fight for New Yorkers and workers everywhere to ensure there's an actual plan to protect their livelihoods from being automated out of existence.
President Donald Trump, the Twitter Troll-in-Chief, lamented that NYC is "devastated he's coming home!"
I am, as it happens, writing this roundup from New York City. Yesterday I asked a cab driver what he thought about de Blasio. The driver, a Democrat and Clinton voter, did not care for the mayor. I asked what he thought about de Blasio running for president. "He's running for president?" the driver responded with apoplectic shock. "Really?"
No longer, my friend. No longer.
Sen. Josh Hawley (R–Mo.) met with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and essentially told him to break up the company.
Just finished meeting w @facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Had a frank conversation. Challenged him to do two things to show FB is serious about bias, privacy & competition. 1) Sell WhatsApp & Instagram 2) Submit to independent, third-party audit on censorship. He said no to both
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) September 19, 2019
Earlier this week, Hawley dismissed his libertarian critics and accused them of being "enamored with power."
Here I ask @HawleyMO about criticism from @DavidAFrench, @robbysoave, and @GeorgeWill that he is trying to use government power to solve cultural problems: https://t.co/LQjYa0Hjzx
— Saagar Enjeti (@esaagar) September 17, 2019
The United Auto Workers' strike against General Motors entered its fifth day Friday. According to The Wall Street Journal:
The work stoppage is among America's largest private-sector walkouts in years. Analysts estimate it is costing GM $50 million to $100 million a day in lost profits. GM's competitors—Ford Motor Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV—have much riding on the outcome of this stalemate. The UAW will use the contract agreed to at GM as a template for talks with the other two U.S. car makers.
It's a confrontation that has been building for years, with the two big institutions, both under acute pressures, driven by diverging goals. Negotiations continue this week. Even after a contract is eventually reached, the relationship may have permanently shifted.
On one side is GM's Chief Executive Mary Barra, who is trying to shed the auto maker's long-held reputation for ignoring problems. She is aiming to show Wall Street that today's GM is leaner and more assertive than the one that collapsed into bankruptcy a decade ago.
On the other side is the UAW, an organization that once ruled the auto industry but is now confronting declines and dissent from within—fueled in part by the popularity of President Trump among its members.
As U.S. auto industry sales slow, following a historic run, both sides are trying to lock in a new labor agreement that will protect their respective livelihoods in the years ahead.
- Rudy Giuliani sounded confused about whether he had demanded an investigation of Joe Biden's Ukrainian ties.
- Canada's Liberal Party is standing by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the wake of his blackface scandal.
- A U.S. drone missile intended for an ISIS hideout instead hit 30 pine nut farmers, killing them. "The attack on Wednesday night also injured 40 people after accidentally targeting farmers and laborers who had just finished collecting pine nuts at mountainous Wazir Tangi in eastern Nangarhar province, three Afghan officials told Reuters." And we wonder why they hate us.
- I wrote about junk hate crime statistics for The Washington Examiner.
- More woke scolding from the ACLU Twitter feed:
There, now you have no excuse. https://t.co/UFoTjdhNMB
— ACLU (@ACLU) September 17, 2019