We guess you could say this is a special edition of “Week in Review,” considering the dominant figure in the news has been Hurricane Sandy and the mass destruction she’s left in the New York region in the wake of her aftermath.
With our headquarters located in Manhattan, we at Biography.com have also felt the effects of Sandy in a personal way. Most of us have been working from home, stranded in our neighboring boroughs due to power outages and mass transit shutdowns. Some of our co-workers have had to scramble to find shelter where there’s electricity, cell phone reception, and running water. Yet all in all, we feel very lucky, considering places like Staten Island and the New Jersey coastline have experienced by far the biggest tragedies.
For those of us who do have power, we’ve been glued to the tube, watching the local news and how the key political players are responding to the devastation and what seemingly is, in regard to our freak weather patterns of the recent past, our “new normal.”
Let’s take a look at all of the fast-moving unexpected events, announcements, and issues that have thrusted themselves onto the following prominent figures, which include President Obama, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
President Obama & Chris Christie
In the last days of a tight presidential race with former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, President Barack Obama has had to juggle campaigning in the hotly contested battleground states and being actively involved in the recovery efforts in New Jersey and New York.
The political pundits and news media have been reeling over the fact that Republican NJ Governor Chris Christie, who spoke vehemently against President Obama at the RNC Convention, has had nothing but praise for Obama’s immediate involvement and support for his local state. Some say it’s practically an endorsement. Obama, too, has been vocal on how relentlessly responsible Christie’s been post-Sandy. Would it be safe to say, ‘Move over Bill Clinton, Obama’s got a new political bromance stirring’? Most likely not, but at least in this moment, partisan politics were pushed aside for the greater good of everyone.
Regardless, Christie still remains true to his signature tough guy, ‘Ima-gonna-bust-you-up’ attitude, having told reporters right after the storm that he doesn’t “give a lick” about the presidential election right now.
Guess we’ll have to wait and see if voters in the affected areas will give a lick at the polls come November 6th.
If you’re in search of sound bites and controversial issues, Andrew Cuomo has got you covered. Now that downtown NYC seems to be the new Atlantis, the New York Governor announced the region’s new normal must call for new action…which involves resurrecting the old issue of global warming.
“We have a 100-year flood every two years now,” he cited, unapologetically attributing it to climate change.
While the latest polls show that over 70% of Americans believe humans are contributing to global warming and almost 100% of climate experts have concluded the same, the issue continues to be divisive.
While the media cites the real “October Surprise” ended up being Hurricane Sandy, Michael Bloomberg offered his own: Just this week, the well-regarded Independent politician endorsed President Obama for a second term.
It’s an eyebrow raiser in political circles, considering the billionaire businessman didn’t endorse Senator John McCain or the President in the 2008 presidential election and has also been quite critical of both Romney and Obama during this year’s campaign.
But it looks like Sandy has changed Bloomberg’s mind, and like Governor Cuomo, he’s also calling attention to the issue of manmade climate change, with the latest cover of Bloomberg Business Week screaming in all caps ‘IT’S GLOBAL WARMING, STUPID.’
“Our climate is changing,” Bloomberg wrote in an op-ed piece in Bloomberg News. “And while the increase in extreme weather we have experienced in New York City and around the world may or may not be the result of it, the risk that it might be-given this week’s devastation-should compel all elected leaders to take immediate action.”
He added, “[Obama] sees climate change as an urgent problem that threatens our planet; [Romney] does not. I want our president to place scientific evidence and risk management above electoral politics.”
But while Bloomberg’s endorsement announcement on the presidential race was one matter, his endorsement to commence another race caused a backlash among many New Yorkers and local officials.
The Mayor was determined to hold the annual NYC Marathon this Sunday, citing it would bring millions in revenue and would not take away from resources involved in the recovery effort.
However, due to the continuing outcry that holding the marathon would be disrespectful to those suffering from Hurricane Sandy, the mayor conceded and canceled the event at the last minute.
“The marathon has always brought our city together and inspired us with stories of courage and determination,” Bloomberg stated. “We would not want a cloud to hang over the race or its participants, and so we have decided to cancel it. We cannot allow a controversy over an athletic event…to distract attention away from all the critically important work that is being done to recover from the storm and get our city back on track.”