President Donald Trump on Thursday took a swipe at the newest candidate to join the Democratic primary pool — Mayor Bill de Blasio, a fellow New Yorker.
The New York City mayor announced his presidential bid in a three-minute video Thursday morning, about half of which was dedicated to attacking Trump and presenting de Blasio as the Democrat best positioned to challenge the president’s hold on the White House in 2020.
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“I’m a New Yorker. I’ve known Trump’s a bully for a long time. This is not news to me or anyone else here,” de Blasio said. “And I know how to take him on.”
Hours after the mayor’s campaign launched, the president weighed in on de Blasio’s candidacy on Twitter.
“The Dems are getting another beauty to join their group,” Trump wrote. “Bill de Blasio of NYC, considered the worst mayor in the U.S., will supposedly be making an announcement for president today. He is a JOKE, but if you like high taxes & crime, he’s your man. NYC HATES HIM!”
The New Yorkers’ relationship dates back to before the president left the Empire State for Washington. The pair exchanged volleys while both were on the campaign trail in 2016. Trump was seeking the White House, while de Blasio was trying to hold on to his seat in City Hall in 2017.
With momentum sagging during his first term in office, de Blasio adopted a campaign strategy based partially on an opportune moment: the rise of Trump. After the president was elected, the mayor pledged to protect the people of New York and resist any moves by the Trump administration to “undermine” his constituents.
De Blasio’s message Thursday echoed this rallying cry, albeit with a more national focus. The mayor detailed efforts to combat climate change, protect families being separated at the border and take the Trump administration to court over security funding.
“Donald Trump must be stopped,” de Blasio said. “I’ve beaten him before, and I will beat him again.”
The mayor responded to Trump’s tweet on Thursday less than an hour after it was posted with a link to his campaign site and his own nickname for the president known for belittling his opponents with various monikers.
“NYC has record low crime & record high jobs,” de Blasio wrote. “We’re investing in working families with free Pre-K & guaranteed health care. #ConDon taking advantage of working families is no joke.”