Mayor de Blasio is in Paris today to visit with local leaders and pay respects to the victims of the January 7th massacre that began at the offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. The Mayor's office announced the trip mere hours before departure yesterday; the itinerary includes laying wreaths at various memorials, meeting with leaders of the Paris Jewish community, and a joint press conference with the city's Socialist mayor Anne Hidalgo, with whom de Blasio has grown close.
De Blasio's first stop this morning was to lay flowers at the kosher supermarket where a gunman killed four hostages. The NY Times reports that the Mayor solemnly shook hands with local leaders, telling them, "My honor." During the meeting with Jewish leaders, de Blasio said, "Both our cities have experienced terror. Both our cities understand what it is to fight back."
De blasio returns to NYC tonight. As expected, the NY Post sneered at the trip: "Fancying himself an international statesman, Mayor Bill de Blasio last night embarked on a whirlwind trip to Paris to give comfort to the French in their hour of need after the Charlie Hebdo terrorism tragedy." (Tomorrow's NY Post cover is expected to feature de Blasio wearing a beret and stuffing a baguette in his mouth as he rides a Penny Farthing on des Champs-Élysées sidewalk.) The tabloid also notes the trip is taxpayer-funded, but its cost was not disclosed.