90 Miles From Tyranny : De Blasio’s senior staff in near revolt over his incompetent coronavirus response

Sunday, March 22, 2020

De Blasio’s senior staff in near revolt over his incompetent coronavirus response

When Mayor de Blasio dragged aides and members of his NYPD security detail to his Brooklyn YMCA Monday morning amidst the coronavirus outbreak, fellow fitness enthusiasts were coughing and sneezing — and a mentally ill person was walking around touching the equipment, a gym source said.

“It’s crazy that he made his staff and detail come with him to the gym and expose them like that,” the source said.

But the incident is just one example of the mayor’s disregard for the health of his staff during the crisis, multiple sources told The Post.

There’s also growing frustration from senior aides, who fault the mayor for dithering instead of making decisions, micromanaging instead of leading, and insisting he knows best instead of listening to others, three sources said.

‘Thank god for Cuomo,’ is a common refrain among the mayor’s staff, made only partly in jest, sources said.

That’s because Gov. Andrew Cuomo has taken the lead on the city’s COVID-19 response — canceling the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, shutting down large venues including Broadway, and even pushing the mayor to close public schools.

But instead of the big picture, the head of the City that Never Sleeps has insisted on proofing all public materials about the city’s COVID-19 response from press releases to ad campaigns, one source said.

“Instead of micromanaging his team he should be leading right now,” the source said.

And the mayor has tossed aside advice from staffers along the way. Staff repeatedly warned the mayor that prematurely announcing a possible shelter-in-place order Tuesday would cause unnecessary panic.

“He can’t handle the word ‘No,’ and it runs people down,” the source said.

“He is dismissive of everyone’s opinion around him,” added a second source.

“It’s very much his way or the highway in moments of crisis and he thinks he knows best,” the second source noted.

De Blasio described what a shelter-in-place order would look like for New York City at a City Hall press briefing and even refused to rule out a ban on travel out of the Big Apple.

Hours later Cuomo went on NY1 to reprimand the mayor.

“There’s not going to be any, ‘You must stay in your house,’ rule,” Cuomo said, calling the mayor’s remarks “counterproductive.” The governor explained that he wanted to craft a statewide plan before shutting down non-essential business in the Big Apple.

The governor eventually announced a statewide lockdown Friday, three days later.

Tensions are also frayed between de Blasio and many of his longtime aides.

But his chief of staff Emma Wolfe enjoys a better relationship with the Mayor.

“She is pushing back a lot harder than she normally does with him,” the second source said.

“Emma is an operative to the core and she has a relationship with the governor’s office. They respect her game and her political mind. She is able to forecast in terms of moves the governor’s office is going to make well before the mayor.

“She sees the need to be decisive in a moment like this and he doesn’t so she’s pushed him to get there,” the second source added.

The Post previously reported tensions between the mayor and senior health department officials including the city’s top doctor, Commissioner Oxiris Barbot.

A third source said de Blasio isn’t delegating decisions, which is why so many major announcements have had to be made by the governor.

The staff is “endlessly frustrated” by the mayor’s disregard for their health and...

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  1. And he is blaming Trump.....

  2. I don't know. Taking his staff down with him seems like the only good position of whatever is passing as a plan that I can see.

    He is creating proof for why not while taking out any who might support his methods after he is toast. All good. If he could die before he releases more criminals on the streets, potentially sick ones, that would be better.