New York City Mayor Eric Adams is calling Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s bruising election loss a “warning sign” for the rest of the nation as he defended his focus on fighting crime in the Big Apple.
“I think it’s a warning sign for the country,” Adams said in a CNN interview Sunday when asked if his ultra-progressive Chicago counterpart’s measly third-place finish last week was a warning sign for New York.
“Eric Adams has been talking about public safety, not only on the campaign trail but for the first year,” Hizzoner explained to “State of the Union” host Dana Bash. “I showed up at crime scenes. I knew what New Yorkers were saying, and I saw it all over the country. I think if anything, it is really stating that this is what I have been talking about. America. We have to be safe.”
Adams, a Democrat, as is Lightfoot, made public safety a hallmark of his 2021 mayoral campaign.
The former city cop said Sunday he believes public safety is a “prerequisite to prosperity” for the Big Apple, Chicago and other major cities across the US.
“We are focused on public safety because people want to be saved,” Adams said, according to the interview transcript released by City Hall.
When Bash pressed him on if his focus on crime has helped feed a GOP talking point that there is too much crime, which hurts Democrats, Adams replied, “I say, I listen to Americans and New Yorkers.
“The polls were clear: New Yorkers felt unsafe, and the numbers show that they were unsafe,” Adams said. “Now, if we want to ignore what the everyday public is stating, then that’s up to [others]. I’m on the subways, I walk the streets. I speak to everyday working-class people, and they were concerned about safety.”
He said that while there have been recent decreases in shootings and homicides in the city, New York has to focus on stopping recidivism.
“We have a recidivism problem in New York and far too many people, there’s about 2,000 people who are repeatedly catch, release, repeat in crimes,” Adams said. “If we don’t take them off our streets, they’re going to continue to prey on innocent people.”
Adams’ comments come days after the NYPD revealed a 5.6% drop in major crimes last month compared to February 2022. There were double-digit percentage drops in robberies, burglary and grand larceny, as well as shootings.
February also recorded 10 fewer murders than the previous year.
Felony assaults and auto grand larceny were slightly up from the previous year.