Perhaps the most vocal opposition to the reform over the past year has come from Mayor Bill de Blasio. In a pair of letters sent behind the scenes, de Blasio urged the legislature to vote against the measure this summer, and he has urged Cuomo to veto the measure since its passage. His advocacy puts the purportedly progressive mayor, elected on a police reform agenda, in the odd position of opposing virtually every major criminal justice reform organization in the state. It also aligns him with people like Patrick Lynch, the demagogic president of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, one of the letter’s signatories.
Meanwhile, de Blasio also finds himself at odds with at least some members of the city council. While she hasn’t been particularly vocal about it, a spokesperson for City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito informed the Voice that she supports knife reform. Ditto Councilman Jumaane Williams. “The mayor’s wrong on this issue,” Williams told us last month.
“The mayor of the city of New York, who’s really supposed to be a progressive, has lobbied, very intensely, for the veto of this bill,” Savino told the crowd on Monday. “That doesn’t make any sense to me. So we have a law that makes no sense, we have a policy that makes no sense, and we have a lobbying effort by the mayor of New York that makes even less sense.”