MANHATTAN — Twenty years removed from 9/11, Gov. Kathy Hochul is leading through a different, but no less, turbulent time for the city and state.
On Wednesday, she was with the man who is widely seen as successfully guiding New York City’s recovery after Sept. 11— former Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
“He gave us belief, he believed us courage, and he gave us a belief that we could have a better New York City,” Hochul said of the former Mayor.
Hochul acknowledged she finds herself in a similar situation to Bloomberg in his first months leading the city, assuming leadership emerging from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’m going to draw on the spirit of this sacred space to propel us forward and tell New Yorkers we’ve been down and out before, but we will be back,” She said.
PIX 11 asked Bloomberg for specific advice he has for Hochul.
“I think what the governor has to do is reach out to everybody, not try to be everybody’s friend, not give everybody what they want,” he said. “She’s got to go and say: ‘This is what’s right for the city.’ She has to be a leader rather than a panderer and unfortunately, I see too much around this country. Elected leaders are just saying what everyone wants, rather than what they know is right.”
Bloomberg also encouraged all New Yorkers to rally around the new governor and soon-to-be-elected new mayor.
Hochul responded by pointing to the first few steps she made as governor: a politically risky school mask mandate, an extension of the eviction moratorium, and managing a flood recovery. She also pointed to her controversial vote in Congress more than a decade ago in favor of the Affordable Care Act— it arguably cost her reelection.
“I believe in pulling people together, getting the best ideas, and being decisive,” Hochul said. “I have no problem making tough decisions and I’m not about making everyone happy.”