Left, New York City Republican mayoral hopeful Joe Lhota, and right, Democratic mayoral hopeful Bill de Blasio. (AP Photo)
After more than a week of being painted as a commie and worse, Bill de Blasio hit back yesterday against his opponent in the NYC mayor’s race with: TOP 10 FACTS ABOUT JOE LHOTA’S ICON, EXTREME CONSERVATIVE BARRY GOLDWATER. Those include Goldwater’s infamous vote against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, wanting to use nukes in Vietnam, and his maxim: “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice.” And the de Blasio camp didn’t even get to the John Birch Society championing Sen. Goldwater in his presidential run against LBJ in 1964.
The ugly tit-for-tat began last week, when The New York Times detailed de Blasio’s support of the Nicaraguan Sandinistas in the 1980s. That spawned an outbreak of innuendo—that he somehow supported the Sandinistas’ alleged anti-Semitism (a charge designed to cut into the Democrat’s Jewish vote), that he was a “bleary, dreary”-eyed druggie in college, that he was an unreconstructed commie symp. “Mr. de Blasio’s class warfare strategy in New York City,” Lhota himself said, “is directly out of the Marxist playbook. Now we know why.”
It took a while, but yesterday the Times ran a profile of the young Joe Lhota. In college, he spent “nights in the gallery of the United States Senate, where he sat rapt as Mr. Goldwater, his boyhood hero, orated on the floor.” Lhota, the Times noted, was also accepted into “a right-leaning summer boot camp for undergraduates” that was “the brainchild of a group of conservatives, including William F. Buckley Jr.”
(De Blasio could as well have run the Top 10 Facts about Buckley, including his support for Senator Joseph McCarthy, whom he called “a prophet,” his admiration for dictators, like Chile’s Augusto Pinochet, and his notion of the “cultural superiority of white over Negro.”)