It’s been over a year since we last reported on New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s continuing campaign to rid the city of its iconic carriage horses. In my view, the carriages horses play a romantic and historic counterpoint to the powerful, bustling, modern city. Foxhunting Life has been reporting to you on de Blasio’s machinations in this silly war, financed and urged on by animal rights activists, since 2014.
So far, de Blasio’s efforts have been thwarted. But working on the principle—if you can’t beat ’em, just keep nibbling away—the city recently proposed to enact new Department of Transportation rules moving the horses and carriages off the city streets to designated spots inside Central Park. Only in the Park would they be allowed to pick up and drop off customers.
But Judge Arthur Engoron issued a temporary restraining order, and set a court hearing for November 8th at which the city must show cause.
During his campaign for the mayoral post in 2013, De Blasio promised to ban the carriage horses outright from the streets of the city. In return, he not only received large campaign donations from an animal rights lobbying entity, NYCLASS, but that entity’s political consultants also created and funded a PAC to trash his opponent in the race, Christine Quinn.
Quinn, who was running ahead of de Blasio, had refused to back the horse carriage ban and therefore received no funds from NYCLASS. The animal rights-funded PAC also went to work and carried out their own “Anyone But Quinn” campaign. De Blasio was elected. The PAC was later found guilty of making illegal contributions to two New York City Council candidates, both of whom were also elected.
Though de Blasio tried several approaches to fulfill his campaign promise to the animal rights activists, he was unable to get the necessary votes from the City Council. Contrary to what the animal rights activists would have everyone believe, even the newspapers had to report that the horses were well cared for, well fed, well housed, and well rested.
Nevertheless, de Blasio took the money, and NYCLASS is not allowing him to forget. Stay tuned.
Posted October 24, 2018