Bill de Blasio in Democratic candidates debate in Detroit Michigan, July 30-31, 2019


On Crime: Blames the feds for letting bad cops stay on police force

Secretary Julian CASTRO: The Department of Justice not going after Officer Pantaleo. [On July 17, 2014, NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, who is white, arrested Eric Garner, who is black, for selling cigarettes; Garner died from Panataleo's chokehold -Ed.] He used a chokehold that was prohibited by NYPD. Eric Garner said that he couldn't breathe. Yet Pantaleo has not been brought to justice. [Why not?]

DE BLASIO: The Garner family are waiting for justice and are going to get justice in the next 30 days, in New York. You know why? Because for the first time, we are not waiting on the federal Justice Department, which told the city of New York that we could not proceed because the Justice Department was pursuing their prosecution. And years went by, and a lot of the pain accrued. And in the meantime, what I'm working on is making sure--and I have for five years--there will never be another tragedy, there will never be another Eric Garner, because we're changing fundamentally how we police.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Environment: Get rid of all lead in housing & schools, once and for all

Q: Hundreds of children living in NYC public housing tested positive for elevated levels of lead. How can you assure the people of Flint Michigan--where lead poisoned the water--and across the nation that you can handle such a problem?

DE BLASIO: We have a huge problem, and it's decades old in New York. But here's what we've done about it. We've declared the eradication of all lead, as the goal of our administration. Lead poisoning has gone down 90% since 2005, and we're going to literally bring it down to zero, because we're going to go into every place--buildings, schools, public housing--and remediate that lead once and for all.

Now, the federal government for decades have been disinvesting in the public housing that was supposed to be a federal responsibility. That's part of why we have this lead crisis to begin with. In NYC, we are going to eradicate lead. And there should be a federal mandate to do the same for Flint, and for every place in this country.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Health Care: It's a myth that people like employer-based insurance

Sen. Kamala HARRIS [to V.P. Biden]: Your plan leaves out almost 10 million Americans.

Joe BIDEN: Harris' plan costs $3 trillion [annually]. Secondly, it will require middle-class taxes to go up, not down. Thirdly, it will eliminate employer-based insurance.

DE BLASIO: I don't know what the vice president and the senator are talking about. The folks I talk to say that their health insurance isn't working for them. There's tens of millions of Americans who don't even have health insurance, tens of millions more who have health insurance they can barely make work because of the co-pays, the deductibles, the premiums, the out-of-pocket expenses. There's this mythology that somehow all of these folks are in love with their insurance in America. What I hear is anger at private insurance companies that skim all the profits off the top and make it impossible for everyday people to get coverage like mental care, dental care, the things that would be full coverage for all Americans.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Health Care: Private insurance hasn't worked for many; let voters decide

Q: What about Medicare-for-All?

Sen. Michael Bennet: We need to be honest about what's in this plan. It bans employer based insurance.

De Blasio: If Democrats say we're done with private insurance, has only hurt the American people in so many ways, we're going to give them something that works for their family's full coverage that they can depend on. This should be the party that stands for universal health care and says we're not going to accept anything less. So many people don't have the health care they need. Tens of millions of people, including middle class people. Give them a chance to make that decision through an election.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Immigration: 11 million immigrants are here now and part of America

It's all kind of charade because there's 11 million people here, and everyone, in theory, has broken the law, but they're part of our communities now. They're part of our economy. They're our neighbors. Why are we even discussing on one level whether it's a civil penalty or a criminal penalty, when it's an American reality? And what we need is comprehensive immigration, once and for all, to fix it.
Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Principles & Values: Restructure society: tax the hell out of the wealthy

To the working people of America, tonight I bring you a message of hope. We can make change in this country. I know from personal experience it can be done.

When I became the mayor of the nation's largest city, I set us on a path of bold change. They said it couldn't be done, but we gave pre-K to every child for free. We got rid of stop-and-frisk and we lowered crime. We raised the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Yes, it can be done.

For 40 years, working people have taken it on the chin in this country. For 40 years, the rich have gotten richer and they've paid less and less in taxes. It cannot go on this way. When I'm president, we will even up the score and we will tax the hell out of the wealthy to make this a fairer country and to make sure it's a country that puts working people first.

If you agree that we can stand up to Donald Trump and we can stand up to the wealthy, then go to TaxTheHell.com and join us, so we can build a country that puts working people first.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Principles & Values: Restructure society: tax the hell out of the wealthy

To the working people of America, tonight I bring you a message of hope. We can make change in this country. I know from personal experience it can be done.

When I became the mayor of the nation's largest city, I set us on a path of bold change. They said it couldn't be done, but we gave pre-K to every child for free. We got rid of stop-and-frisk and we lowered crime. We raised the minimum wage to $15 an hour. Yes, it can be done.

For 40 years, working people have taken it on the chin in this country. For 40 years, the rich have gotten richer and they've paid less and less in taxes. It cannot go on this way. When I'm president, we will even up the score and we will tax the hell out of the wealthy to make this a fairer country and to make sure it's a country that puts working people first.

If you agree that we can stand up to Donald Trump and we can stand up to the wealthy, then go to TaxTheHell.com and join us, so we can build a country that puts working people first.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On Principles & Values: Impeach Trump, but Dems should talk about working people

I think it's obvious at this point in our history that the president has committed the crimes worthy of impeachment. But I want to caution my fellow Democrats. While we move in every way we can for impeachment, we have to remember at the same time the American people are out there looking for us to do something for them in their lives. And what they see when they turn on the TV or go online is just talk about impeachment.

We need more talk about working people and their lives. For example, are we really ready -- and I ask people on this stage this question -- are we ready to make sure that the wealthy pay their fair share in taxes? That's something every American wants to know about. That's something they want answers to right now.

So, yeah, move for impeachment, but don't forget to do the people's business and to stand up for working people, because that's how we're actually going to beat Donald Trump. The best impeachment is beating him in the election of 2020.

Source: July Democratic Primary debate, on impeaching Trump Jul 31, 2019

On Tax Reform: Tax the hell out of the wealthy

This has to be the party that's not afraid to say out loud we're going to tax the hell out of the wealthy. And when we do that, Donald Trump right on cue will call us socialists. Well, here's what I'll say to him. Donald, you're the real socialist. The problem is, it's socialism for the rich. We can fight back. If you agree that we can stand up to Donald Trump and the wealthy, go to taxthehell.com and join us, so we can build a country that puts working people first.
Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

On War & Peace: Stop the march to war in Iran

We haven't talked about Iran [in this debate]. We didn't talk about Iran. We're on the march to war in Iran right now, and we blew by it [in this debate]. We have to stop this march to war in Iran. And the Democratic Party has to stand up for it.
Source: July Democratic Primary debate (second night in Detroit) Jul 31, 2019

The above quotations are from Democratic candidates debate in Detroit Michigan, July 30-31, 2019.
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