Breaking up is easy to do: De Blasio declines to endorse former boss Hillary Clinton, signaling political divorce

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NEW YORK (PIX11) -- "Do not step on the announcement."

"Do not insert yourself into the story."

Those are the simple and unwritten rules that political parties and their key operatives within the party tend to observe on a day when a candidate announces his or her intention to run for office.

However, campaigns do not always go according to plan.

Former New York Senator Hillary Clinton's campaign found this out Sunday morning when Mayor Bill de Blasio said the following six words on national TV, "We need to see the substance," declining to endorse her presidential candidacy.

"The divorce papers between the de Blasio camp and the Clinton camp were served with that interview on 'Meet The Press,' there is no question about it," said political analyst Dan Gerstein.

De Blasio bolstered his political resume as Clinton's former campaign manager during her initial successful run at U.S. Senate.  For de Blasio not to endorse his old boss just a few hours before Clinton announced her candidacy sent a clear message to many.

As a national spokesman for the Gore -Lieberman ticket in 2000, Gerstein understands that there are strategic political moves that are made for the short-term as well as the long-term, with the risk/reward component examined carefully beforehand.

"It was unmistakable what was happening there.  Mayor de Blasio knew Hillary Clinton was going to run for president so the idea that this was somehow a surprise and he wasn't prepared to endorse is poppycock," said Gerstein, adding, "It was a deliberate decision on his part to separate himself from the Clintons."

It is important to note that the Clintons were in the first row at de Blasio's inauguration 14 months ago and it was former President Bill Clinton who administered the oath of office.

Basil Smikle worked on the Clinton campaign that de Blasio managed and is the newly named  executive director of the New York State Democratic Party.  He told PIX11 News: "Did it have to happen on the day that she announced, well there might have been a better time to do it."

Smikle did add that he views the mayor's nonendorsement as simply De Blasio trying get a new set of progressive talking points into the 2016 race/ "We are a party that discusses ideas and try to bring the best of those ideas to forefront.  So I think that is what you're seeing now, just a very good discussion."

Meanwhile Gerstein adds that in all likelihood their will no longer be any discussions between the Clintons and Mayor de Blasio, "He took a risk and probably burned a bridge."

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