Public Advocate Bill de Blasio is challenging Mayor Michael Bloomberg on how to pay for universal pre-kindergarten.
The challenge came after de Blasio called for a tax surcharge on the wealthiest New Yorkers to make sure every 4-year-old child has access to a full day of pre-kindergarten.
Since then, the mayor has ripped the plan, saying it will force some of the wealthy out of the city.
On NY1’s Inside City Hall Tuesday, the public advocate called on the Mayor for a one-on-one discussion of the issue, moderated by political anchor Errol Louis.
“Why doesn’t he come on this show and I will come on this show and we will have a real debate on this issue," de Blasio said. "You are a good moderator, you’d be a lot better moderator than Jim Lehrer. This is serious discussion to have about one, how to fix our schools.”
The mayor’s press secretary, Marc LaVorgna, responded in a statement.
“We agree on the importance and value of early education, which is why we recently began the first-ever program to start early education at six weeks old for at-risk children," the statement read. "We disagree with his idea of how to pay for it."