New York Mayor Bill de Blasio Defends His Racial Joke, Says 'People Are Missing the Point'
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio defended a racial joke he made a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton.
De Blasio went on CNN on Monday night to say he meant no offense.
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He said: It was clearly a staged show, it was a scripted show and the whole idea was do the counter intuitive, ‘cautious politician time,’ every actor involved including Hillary Clinton and Leslie Odom Jr. thought it was a joke on a different convention. That was the whole idea of it and I think people are missing the point.
On Saturday night, he and Hillary Clinton created a firestorm after a joke they made during a fundraiser featuring Leslie Odom Jr., who stars in the hit Broadway musical Hamilton.
It happened during the Inner Circle dinner, an annual black tie event that brings the city’s press corps, lobbyists and lawmakers together. Clinton made a surprise appearance.
Clinton said: “Thank you for the endorsement, Bill. Took you long enough.”
“Sorry Hillary, I was running on CP time,” he said. Many in the audience cringed as the term refers to “Colored People Time.”
Odom Jr., who is black but appeared to be in on the joke said: “I don't like jokes like that, Bill.”
Clinton then stepped in to say the mayor was referring to “Cautious politician time.”
A spokesperson for de Blasio responded to the gaffe in a statement and insisted it was ment as satire.
"Let's be clear, in an evening of satire, the only person this was meant to mock was the mayor himself," the spokesperson said. "Certainly no one intended to offend anyone."
Clinton has been vigorously campaigning in New York, where she was a former senator, ahead of the state’s primaries next week.