Punctuality-challenged Mayor Bill de Blasio more than met his match on Tuesday, waiting for 3 1/2 hours on line in Brooklyn to vote, as he again blasted the Board of Elections for the glacial process.
After joining a blocks-long line around the Park Slope Armory at 1:20 p.m., Hizzoner first had to endure some heckling from passersby.
“Get to work!” yelled one passing cyclist.
“You’re the worst mayor ever!” intoned another critic walking by.
But the waiting was the hardest part, as de Blasio logged some three-and-a-half hours on his feet before finally casting his ballot at 4:50 p.m.
Hizzoner — wearing a suit and a blue medical mask — passed the time by gamely gabbing with constituents waiting in line and, towards the end of his wait, dished out slices from a pizza to those around him.
At first, de Blasio took the wait in his lanky stride.
“Everyone else is waiting,” said the mayor, early in his wait. “They’re doing it because they care and they want to make their voices heard.
“I admire everyone on this line and I’m going to join them.”
But as the afternoon wound on, he grumbled about the sloppy operation, one day after he and Gov. Andrew Cuomo trashed the city’s Board of Elections for its handling of the process, as the weekend saw polling sites swamped with hours-long lines amid historic turnout.
17NY mayor Bill de Blasio arriver just before 2PM to get on hours long line in his old Park Slope neighborhood that stretched blocks to cast his vote in the 2020 Presidential elections.
“It’s sad that people are being put through this. It shouldn’t be, doesn’t have to be,” he said Tuesday. “I do believe the Board of Elections is entirely broken and must be replaced, because whether it’s a purposeful effort or incompetence, it doesn’t matter: The result’s the same.
“It’s not supposed to be hard. It doesn’t have to be hard.”
After finally voting, he added, “That was a long wait, but it was worth it. … It shouldn’t take so long. I know they print out the ballots. I get that that takes a little extra time. But it’s really lack of machines, lack of personnel, lack of hours. That’s the fundamental problem. They can overcome that.”
Mayoral press secretary Bill Neidhardt on Tuesday echoed that call.
“Democracy is about equality. @NYCMayor is waiting in line like the rest of us,” tweeted Neidhardt as his boss stood in line. “The BOE needs to get their act together. More machines. More staff. Shorter lines. #VoteEarly”
Of course, had de Blasio not spent the afternoon doing his civic duty, he may have been in the area anyway for his head-clearing, afternoon jaunts around Prospect Park.