New York Post
Blas won’t endorse as prez run official
What an ingrate! Hillary Rodham Clinton is furious at Mayor de Blasio — whom she helped put in City Hall — for refusing yesterday to endorse her run for president.
Another Bill has let her down. Hillary Rodham Clinton is fuming at ingrate Mayor de Blasio after he balked at endorsing her for president Sunday, despite years of crucial political support from her and her husband, sources told The Post.
“No,” de Blasio said flatly when asked on NBC’s “Meet the Press” if he was endorsing the Democratic frontrunner. “Not until I see— and, again, I would say this about any candidate— until I see an actual vision of where they want to go.
“I think, like a lot of people in this country, I want to see a vision. And, again, that would be true of candidates on all levels. It’s time to see a clear, bold vision for progressive economic change.”
The disloyal Dem delivered the snub to his and former boss and mentor after her camp got annoyed at him over his plan to travel to Iowa thisweek to discuss income inequality, sources said.
“There is simply no way on earth that the Hillary campaign wanted the mayor of New York City cutting into her first cycle of Iowa press,” said one Democratic source.
“There is simply no benefit to her for him to be there. There is no way that his trip will be written about froman ideological standpoint now.”
Clinton, who is considered more moderate than the leftist de Blasio, has spoken out on income inequality in recentweeks, but is considered by many advocates to be weak on the issue because of her relative silence on it and her family’s wealth.
Clinton loyalists blasted the meddling mayor for daring to enter her spotlight — especially considering that she and former President Bill Clinton gave him one of his earliest entrees into government, as a regional director at the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development.
De Blasio also got the golden opportunity to manage Hillary Clinton’s successful US Senate campaign in New York.
And when de Blasio stepped out on his own, it was top Clinton aide Harold cIkes who advised him on his mayoral campaign, during which Hillary personally hit the trail with him and raised money.
Bill Clinton even swore him in as mayor.
“They both offered extraordinarily helpful advice,” de Blasio said of the
Clintons at the time. “I am proud to come from the Clinton family.”
An incredulous national Democratic official with ties to New York fumed, “What was de Blasio thinking? Today is not about Bill de Blasio.”
State Sen. Diane Savino ( DSI), a 2008 Clinton delegate, agreed.
“I don’t think de Blasio should be the focus. Hillary should be the focus,” she said.
“He couldn’t get the Democratic National Committee to come to Brooklyn, but Hillary opened her headquarters in Brooklyn.”
Gov. Cuomo, with whom de Blasio has repeatedly clashed, backed Clinton immediately, saying she has the “resilience and experience to be a great president.”
Cuomo’s camp insisted that the governor was on board all along and that the immediate endorsement was not meant as a slight to de Blasio.
Political consultant Hank Sheinkopf, who worked for Hizzoner’s mayoral rival Bill Thompson, described de Blasio’s move as ultimately selfserving.
“Some people will say he’s an ingrate, but there’s a strategy here,” Sheinkopf said.
“He’s setting himself up to be the progressive clearinghouse in America. He wants to be the national voice of progressives.
“It’s smart,” he added. “In politics, people aren’t friends with people. People tend to use each other. He gains tremendous leverage. She doesn’t need his endorsement now. When she gets hit from the left, his endorsement has much more value. He will definitely endorse her — but endorsements have to have value, and timing is everything.”
Clinton’s publicity push began late in the day Sunday as she left her home in Chappaqua in Westchester County and started a 1,000mile trip by van to Iowa.
The van — which an aide said was nicknamed Scooby after the cartoon van from “Scooby Doo” called the Mystery Machine — stopped at a gas station in Pennsylvania, where Clinton tweeted a picture of herself with a random family from Michigan.
Her top aide Huma Abedin said the van was Clinton’s idea and “she’s been really excited about it since she came up with it.”
Meanwhile, some observers suggested that the squabble with de Blasio might be good for the party by avoiding the appearance of a coronation.
“That was absolutely the right move by Mayor de Blasio,” said Adam Green, cofounder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee.
“Those whowant our next Democratic nominee to campaign on big, bold, economic populist ideas should focus on laying out clear lines, opening up political space, and creating incentives for candidates to jump into that political space,” Green added. “A rush to endorse mostly does the opposite.”
Additional reporting by Priscilla DeGregory
HILLARY’S made it official: She’s now a candidate for president in the 2016 election. Question is, can she win? The former first lady and secretary of state certainly carries lots of baggage as she enters the race, including but not limited to all those missing emails.
But she isn’t expecting any of those issues to prove fatal. Her big fear — according to the Wall Street Democrats I speak to — is being stuck with ( and blamed for) her old boss’ economy.
That’s because the economy has never fully recovered from the financial collapse that President Obama faced when he took office.
The spin from the Obama team on the lousy March jobs report went about like this: Lots of snow and frigid temperatures stopped an otherwise robust economy in its tracks, as people temporarily cut back on eating, drinking and shopping, to the point where employers just didn’t need to hire many new workers.
For those of us waiting for a good laugh, let’s hope Hillary makes these same nonsensical points on the campaign trail.
Fact is, many analysts believe the economy is worse than the headline numbers, filtered through the Obamaites and their media lackeys, suggest. They point to other data that hint things could even get worse in the months ahead.
That weak jobs report alone, of course, should make Clinton fear that— once again — the Obama economy isn’t really getting better.
Again, the headline number sounds good: Unemployment kept steady at a reasonable 5.5 percent, far below the doubledigit mess Obama inherited, and not far from our prefinancial crisis glory days.
But scratch a bit deeper, as many economists and savvy Wall Street investors have, and the economy looks weaker. For example, the real jobless rate— which takes into account the marginally employed and those not looking for jobs, folks who don’t show up in the official stats— is closer to 11 percent, as it’s been for the past year.
Worse, the workforce only gained 126,000 new jobs in March, down from around 200,000 or more a month for the past year.
And a year of 200,000 new jobs a month isn’t much to celebrate: Under President Ronald Reagan, the economy added more than 300,000 jobs a month for 23 months, and had plenty more months above 200,000 over his two terms — and the workforce was smaller then. ( Reagan, like Obama, inherited a recession.)
Sure, when it’s cold out, people stay indoors more; construction workers don’t work; restaurants are less crowded. But other numbers ( ones the White House rarely mentions) point to a real slowdown, not a winter only one.
Take the Purchasing Managers Index, which measures the strength of the manufacturing sector. It’s been above the 50 percent mark— not bad, since any number above 50 means the sector is growing and creating jobs. But the details are troubling: The March PMI number ( the latest available) was 51.5 percent, just barely above 50, and it marks a 14month low, down from 52.9 percent in February. This suggests that growth in manufacturing is starting to fade away.
Manufacturing doesn’t tell the whole story; servicerelated industries may be more important. But even if the likes of Walmart are now offering a bit more pay to their clerks, overall wage growth remains slow. That’s why surveys show many Americans saying the economy isn’t that much better now than after the 2008 crisis.
“The weaker than expected March jobs report finally gave way to other weak economic data points we’ve been getting,” said Joseph Fahmy, a managing director at Zor Capital.
Fahmy’s prediction: More grim data will soon appear and prompt the Federal Reserve to abandon its plan to raise interest rates in the spring or summer, lest the stock market wind up following the economy into the hole.
The clues are certainly out there. Consider: The country’s economic growth, as defined by Gross Domestic Product, in last year’s fourth quarter was recently revised downward to a paltry 2.2 percent. And that’s for the period before all the real cold weather kicked in ( and before the strong dollar, which hurts exports, really took hold).
All told, the US economy under Obama has grown at an average seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.9 percent— the lowest in nearly 70 years. And it could get worse: The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta has cut its projected growth rate for the economy to nearly zero for the first quarter of 2015.
That’s right, zero, which is better than negative — but not enough for Hillary Clinton to be picking new color patterns for the curtains in the Oval office.
Charles Gasparino is a Fox Business Network senior correspondent.