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De Blasio fires back at Bloomberg over 'racist' accusation

bill de blasio son dante Mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio visits a Brooklyn senior center with his son Dante. Credit: Bess Adler

When New York magazine reported that Mayor Michael Bloomberg called Bill de Blasio's campaign "racist" in a story released on Saturday, it caused an outcry that saw the entire de Blasio family pushing back at the accusation and the magazine hastening to provide more context to the quote.

The remarks came after interviewer Chris Smith said the Democratic front-runner had been running a "class-warfare campaign"—to which Bloomberg responded, “Class warfare and racist."

Asked to clarify, Bloomberg said,“Well, no, no, no. I mean he’s making an appeal using his family to gain support. I think it’s pretty obvious to anyone watching what he’s been doing."

The interview, as originally reported, left out Bloomberg's "Well, no, no, no." Under pressure from his office, the online version of the article was amended to include the full exchange, along with an editor's note.

"The mayor's office asked us to amend the remarks to add an interjection that was inaudible in our audiotape of the interview, which was conducted over speakerphone. In our view the added words do not alter the meaning of the exchange as reflected in the published interview," it read.

Meanwhile, de Blasio responded to the comments on Saturday, along with his wife and daughter.

"I'm exceedingly proud of my family," he told reporters. "They are each and every one strong and independent and make their own decisions. And we all have proceeded as a family together, and it's been an extraordinarily positive experience for us. So all I can say is I hope the mayor will reconsider what he said. I hope he'll realize that it was inappropriate."

"Everything I do for the campaign is my decision," 18-year-old Chiara de Blasio added. "And I think that, or at least I suspect ... 20 years ago my dad did not know he was running for mayor, and he did not seek to marry a black woman to put her on display."

Watch the video here:

Follow Emily Johnson on Twitter @emilyjreports

 
 
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