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Bill de Blasio, 58, is the 109th mayor of New York City-Associated Press

Bill de Blasio’s gruelling bid for the presidency has finally come to an end after months of travelling across the country. The outcome is undeniably not what the current mayor of New York City (NYC) had planned when he launched his campaign to replace Trump in May.

The politician publicly said that he cut the cord on the presidency on September 20, during the television program “Morning Joe”, on MSNBC.

“Let me just say upfront, these last months, I had an extraordinary experience going all over this country and I actually think it’s a better country than we often see portrayed”, said de Blasio.

“I’ve contributed all I can to this primary election and it’s clearly not my time”, said NYC’S mayor.

Being on the sidelines doesn’t mean he won’t get involved in the national electoral process. Amongst other things, de Blasio hopes the elected officials will progressively push and fight for a national strategy on the issue of automation of jobs-that will change the landscape of many professional fields. This will and already has created an anxiety about the future of work. A national strategy should include incentives for workers, especially those in low-wage earner/routine-based jobs, who need to get re-educated in a near future.

Nevertheless, a January report from The World Economic Forum (WEF) indicates that artificial intelligence and robotics will create 60 million more jobs by 2022. On that front, short-term anxiety is understandable, but not on the long run. “If your job is boring and repetitive, you’re probably at great risk of automation”, said Mark Muro, co-author of the WEF report. The market will surely adapt to this new reality.

The number of industrial robots around the globe will quadruple by 2025, says the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), an international global management consulting firm.

De Blasio probably waited too long before running for the White House. At the moment he had decided to run, he was the 23rd candidate to put his hat in the ring. De Blasio has proven time and time that he is a great progressive, middle-class fighter democrat candidate that would have done well against Trump and during his short campaign, he was remembered for calling the president “Con Don” on multiple occasions.

During the campaign, de Blasio raised around $1.1 million- far behind the lead candidates. He didn’t qualify for the third democrat debate in September. He was also too low in the polls to get a seat to the fourth debate next month.

I find it quite surprising he wasn’t able to get support from a large number of democrat members, taking into account that he is in command of the most populated city in the United States. Pete Buttigieg was able to attract much more attention and support even if he is only mayor of South Bend.

Being in charge of a population totaling over 8M people since 2014 isn’t an easy task. Before becoming mayor, de Blasio worked in City Hall and then was elected as a municipal councillor. He managed Hillary Clinton’s 2000 Senate campaign and later criticized her for not having a progressive enough platform during the 2016 general election.

With the Party in mind he has indirectly attacked Biden, he said: “ We don’t have to worry about lack of unity, we do need to worry about lack of passion.”

Bill de Blasio’s campaign slogan for his bid, Working People First, didn’t resonate with democrats.

Some say he isn’t charismatic enough. I am not a New Yorker, nor an American, but I think that he brought forward good policies for the Democratic Party. Policy-wise he was probably in the best position to possibly obtain support from some republicans in 2020. Everyone agrees that for the democrats to beat Trump next year, it is going to take a big voter turnout.

It will be interesting to watch who the mayor supports as a candidate. Joe Biden will probably not be the one he supports as de Blasio has called out Joe Biden the last few months for being too much of a moderate.

The Big Apple on the Map

New York City has been doing well compared to other cities in the U.S.A. It has been a witness to many bold local reforms over the past few years. This will push positive consequences for changes at the other levels of government.

Because of gang activities and illegal trade, shootings have increased in 2019, compared to 2018. The crime rate is now lower. Serious crime, a category that includes burglary, rape and felony assault, is down nearly 4% this year compared with the same period in 2018, according to the New York Police Department (NYPD).

The rate is the lowest for the first six months of the year since the NYPD started tracking major crimes in 1994. “There is always more to be done, and there are some areas of real concern, but the big picture is very, very positive”, said de Blasio earlier this year.

Under de Blasio’s watch universal pre-k for all children was implemented. Because of this new initiative, about 70,000 NYC children are now enrolled in the system.

Earlier this year, New York was home to an impressive rise of the minimum wage- that is taking place gradually throughout 2019. Now, all businesses with more than 10 employees must pay their staff $15 an hour. This policy improves the lives of 1.5 million workers, according to the New York City comptroller’s office.

Excluding 29 States and Washington, D.C., at the national level, the minimum wage remains at a low number of $7.25 an hour.

In comparison, in Canada, the minimum wage varies from province to province. Saskatchewan is where the minimum salary is the lowest ($11.06 an hour). The minimum salary is the highest in Alberta ($15 an hour)- in part because of the oil industry.

The next democrat presidential debate will be held on October 15 in Westerville, Ohio, moderated by CNN and The Times.

Graduated with a masters degree in politics from the University of Quebec in Montreal. Human rights, LGBT issues, sports and music. Twitter: @OlivierPilon

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