Just days after New York City's prominent liberal mayor instructed local drivers to be more responsible, Bill de Blasio's motorcade was caught on camera speeding, weaving in and out of lanes and blowing through stop signs. On the networks, however, only CBS This Morning bothered to cover the story.
Norah O'Donnell began by suggesting that de Blasio "could be in for a bumpy ride" and explained that his "motorcade was spotted speeding and breaking several other traffic laws, Thursday." According to O'Donnell, "If the driver had been stopped, he could have racked up his citations to have his license suspended." [MP3 audio here.] NBC's Today and ABC's Good Morning America avoided the story.
No one's suggesting de Blasio's lawbreaking is the most important story in the news, but GMA devoted two and a half minutes to the popularity of "glam on the go," the new fad of makeup express bars.
MSNBC's Morning Joe and Fox News's Fox and Friends both made time for de Blasio's speeding.
The Wire referred to the activist mayor's actions as the "speeding limousine liberal."
The website for de Blasio's new city program demands:
This status quo is unacceptable. The City of New York must no longer regard traffic crashes as mere "accidents," but rather as preventable incidents that can be systematically addressed. No level of fatality on city streets is inevitable or acceptable. This Vision Zero Action Plan is the City's foundation for ending traffic deaths and injuries on our streets.
The City will use every tool at its disposal to improve the safety of our streets. With this action plan, the City is making a bold new commitment to improve street safety in every neighborhood and in every borough – with expanded enforcement against dangerous moving violations like speeding and failing to yield to pedestrians, new street designs and configurations to improve safety, broad public outreach and communications, and a sweeping legislative agenda to increase penalties for dangerous drivers and give New York City control over the safety of our own streets.
Vision Zero also needs each and every New Yorker to become aware of the new public discourse on street safety, to appreciate the consequences of careless and dangerous behavior and to do their part to lend civility and consideration to the daily life and rhythm on the streets of our city.
A transcript of the February 21 This Morning segment is below:
NORAH O'DONNELL: And New York City's mayor could be in for a bumpy ride this morning. Bill de Blasio's motorcade was spotted speeding and breaking several other traffic laws, Thursday. Only a two days, earlier he announced plans to end traffic deaths in the big apple. Our New York station, WCBS, caught the mayor's SUV rolling through stop signs, changing lanes without signaling and going 60 miles an hour in a 45-mile-an-hour zone. If the driver had been stopped, he could have racked up his citations to have his license suspended. The mayor's press secretary says De Blasio is firmly committed to his traffic safety plan. In a statement, the NYPD says "police department personnel assigned to the mayor's security detail receive specialized training in driving based on maintaining security as well as safety."