De Blasio on a ‘helpful’ meeting with Ray Kelly
Bill de Blasio and Ray Kelly engaged in a argument throughout the course of the mayoral campaign, with the public advocate running on a promise of changing police policy, and the commissioner warning that said changes would endanger public safety.
That argument culminated in Kelly's speech in lower Manhattan the day before the Democratic primary, in which he complained that none of the mayoral candidates even asked to have a meeting with the NYPD to get a briefing on the terrorist threat facing the city. Kelly's contention was that the city would become a dangerous place if the wrong candidate were elected.
De Blasio supports creating an inspector general for the NYPD and allowing lawsuits in state court for allegedly bias-based police stops. Kelly strongly opposes both bills.
Also, de Blasio has shifted his views on the NYPD's surveillance program which critics say unfairly targets Muslims. De Blasio used to view it as an approrpiate operation, but after the Associated Press reported that its scope was wider than previously known, de Blasio said the NYPD was overreaching.
Today at Brooklyn Borough Hall, de Blasio said his meeting with Kelly was "extremely helpful." But, he added, "It was a confirmation to me of many things I thought already. But certainly a reminder of how much work we have to do in this city."
De Blasio said he would only speak in general terms about the meeting.
"New York City has to protect its own interests," he said. "The threat is intense and ongoing and will be ongoing for many years to come and ... we have to be vigilant."