It seemed everybody in New York City was talking about a subway derailment that left dozens injured, hundreds walking along perilous subway tracks and thousands with delayed commutes Tuesday.
Everyone except Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio, anyway.
Neither the governor, who controls the MTA, nor the mayor, who runs the city where the derailment crippled commutes, showed up at the site of the derailment in Harlem.
The governor’s schedule said he would be in the city; his office said he’d changed plans and gone to Albany.
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The mayor hit the gym in Park Slope this morning, then held meetings at Gracie Mansion.
“Sometimes it’s helpful to have the Mayor there, and sometimes it serves little purpose,” spokesman Austin Finan said. “What matters is that those who absolutely needed to be on site were there.”
That includes emergency responders and the fire commissioner, Finan said.
“The Mayor has been briefed on the derailment and spoken with MTA Chairman (Joe) Lhota,” he said. “We’ll continue to monitor the situation as the investigation continues.”
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De Blasio seemed to think being on site was important when, as mayor-elect, he ripped his predecessor, Michael Bloomberg, for not heading to the site of a Metro North derailment in the Bronx. Earlier this year, after de Blasio didn’t visit the Brooklyn station where an Long Island Railroad train derailed, he noted it wasn’t of the same “magnitude” as the Metro North crash, since nobody died.
For once, de Blasio and Cuomo seemed to agree on something — at least for a few hours, anyway. Through 5 p.m., neither of them had even issued a statement on the derailment and subsequent problems underground.
Cuomo’s office sent one out around 5:30 p.m., not long after the News inquired about whether they’d sent one that might have been missed.
“While the investigation is ongoing, this morning’s subway derailment is an unacceptable manifestation of the system’s current state,” Cuomo said. “New Yorkers deserve better.”
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He thanked first responders and pinned his hopes for the future on new MTA Chairman Lhota.
“As I have told Joe, any support the MTA needs to get through this crisis, will be provided,” Cuomo said.
De Blasio, meanwhile, refused to discuss the derailment as he walked into a Bronx school to give a graduation speech Tuesday afternoon. He ignored questions from reporters about why he wouldn’t address the safety of the subway system or that hundreds of New Yorkers had walked through tunnels — instead joking and laughing with police officers who were stationed outside the event.
The mayor — who has recently issued statements about Supreme Court decisions, the Senate healthcare bill, and the passages of Assembly healthcare and electoral reform legislation that were doomed in the Senate — did not issue a statement.
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While the mayor didn’t have anything to say, Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez (R-Manhattan), promised to hold oversight hearings investigating the MTA.
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