New York City mayor-elect Bill de Blasio may not have the glitz and glamour of outgoing billionaire bad boy Michael Bloomberg, but that doesn't mean he can't attract star power.
Former president Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the closest thing to American royalty that exists, will attend de Blasio's inauguration on January 1 on the New York City Hall steps. President Clinton will swear-in de Blasio using a bible once owned by another former president, Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The de Blasio team announced the Clintons' attendance Saturday. "Chirlane and I couldn't be more excited to have President Clinton and Secretary Clinton stand with us,” de Blasio said in a statement.
The connections between the new mayor and the famously loyal Clintons run deep. The two Bills know each other from the time De Blasio worked for President Clinton as a regional director at the Department for Housing and Urban Development, a detail highlighted by the de Blasio team. In 2000, de Blasio also worked as Hillary's campaign manager when she was running for U.S. Senate. (She won, for the record.) The New York Daily News notes Hillary also headlined a fundraiser during the general election.
In the the tale of two New Yorks, De Blasio is supposed to be the people's mayor — for the New York who doesn't jet off to Bermuda on weekends, or travel by town car. Bloomberg used his immense wealthy, powerful friends to influence policy during his twelve years in office; de Blasio doesn't have the same connections.
But when de Blasio calls on the Clintons for a favor, they listen. That's not nothing. And before their arrival, the purely procedural event on New Year's Day was mostly about saying bye bye to Bloomberg. Now, the spotlight lies on the mayor and the company he keeps.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.