Mayor Bill de Blasio once again addressed the press Monday about his security detail speeding last week, where he emphasized that no one, including him, is above the traffic laws, but also refused to second guess what he described as a matter of security protocol. NY1's Grace Rauh filed the following report.
Mayor Bill de Blasio is finally answering questions about his chauffeured SUV going well above the speed limit and flying past stop signs after an event in Queens.
"Every city employee needs to respect the law, myself included, needs to respect the traffic laws," de Blasio said. "That's a very different question, however, from the question of security for someone protected by the NYPD."
The video, which first aired Thursday night on WCBS-2 News, struck a nerve because it was taken only two days after the mayor unveiled his plan to improve safety on city streets by taking aim at reckless drivers.
The mayor said at the time that his administration would be held to the same standard as the public. He is now suggesting that there is a different standard when it comes to his own official vehicle, which is driven by a member of the mayor's security team.
"I don't tell the NYPD how to do their work when it comes to protecting me," de Blasio said. "They're the experts. I respect that."
De Blasio has faced criticism in recent weeks over other issues, including his administration's response to a snowstorm and his decision to keep schools open on a particularly snowy day.
"The notion that there's going to be scrutiny, again, is baked into this whole reality, and you know, if you don't like the heat, get out of the kitchen, as Harry Truman used to say, and I chose to take the heat," de Blasio said.
However, when the heat was turned up on Friday, de Blasio made a beeline for the door. He told reporters that morning that he would entertain their questions about his speeding vehicle, but in the end, he refused to follow through.
The mayor, though did manage to win over at least one critic on Monday: weatherman Al Roker. Roker blasted the mayor for his decision to keep schools open earlier this month, predicting that de Blasio would be a one-term mayor, but the ice between them seems to have thawed.