In This Fight, Public Advocate Is The Underdog (City Limits)

New York’s new public advocate, former city councilmember (and Hillary Clinton campaign director) Bill de Blasio, has been mostly talk since his election last fall — but for city’s “ombudsman,” speaking loudly might be the most effective tool of all. (And no, I’m not exactly sure what the headline means, though I hope it involves Mike Bloomberg as Simon Bar Sinister.)

When the New York Times delivered its all-important endorsement to then-City Councilman Bill de Blasio in last year’s race for public advocate, the paper noted that the winner’s chief task would be “demonstrating whether this position truly serves New Yorkers.”

If the subtext wasn’t clear then, it was brought into sharp focus when the mayor’s charter revision commission announced that its agenda for this year would include the possible elimination of the public advocate position… [read more]