Bill De Blasio

Que estaba pensando? De Blasio: “I learned from that mistake.”

After getting a drubbing from fellow Democrats after he quoted Che Guevara — apparently unknowingly — during a rally for Miami airport workers earlier today, New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio said he’s sorry.

During an interview shortly before 6:30 this evening , CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked De Blasio where he picked up the Spanish-language phrase, “Hasta la victoria siempre,” which means “Until victory, always!”

“That’s an honest mistake and I do apologize for it,” De Blasio said, after Blitzer played a clip of De Blasio speaking the quote, which drew a loud roar of support from the striking airport workers at the rally.

“The folks there … took it as just an affirmation of the strike,” De Blasio explained. “I do apologize because I didn’t understand the context, and I certainly did not mean to offend anyone.”

But Blitzer pointed out that Che Guevara is a figure despised by many of the Cuban-Americans who populate Miami.

“I understand the sensitivities. I learned from that mistake,” De Blasio said.

 

Post-debate “oops” moment: De Blasio channels Che — in Miami

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It’s typically una cosa buena to show off your Spanish-speaking creds in Miami.

But not so much for New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, who sparked outrage after he reportedly quoted Marxist revolutionary and guerrilla leader Ernesto “Che” Guevara earlier today.

“The eyes of the world are on Miami-Dade and on this airport,” De Blasio said at a rally in support of employees protesting poor working conditions at Miami International Airport. “Hasta la victoria siempre!”

The Spanish phrase — Until victory, always! — has long been associated with Guevara, from his purported “farewell letter” to Cuba.

De Blasio’s comments quickly drew condemnation, and Florida Democrats demanded that the presidential contender apologize.

Florida Democratic Party Chairwoman Terrie Rizzo (@TerrieRizzo) tweeted:

“Mayor Bill DeBlasio does not speak for Floridians or the Florida Democratic Party and he would be wise to apologize.”

State Sen. Annette Taddeo blasted De Blasio on Twitter, saying she was “utterly disgusted.”

State Sen. José Javier Rodrigues also slammed the presidential hopeful in a tweet followed by this post from Javier Estevez, a Miami Democrat running for the state House:

De Blasio’s gaffe gave a boost to Republicans, who’ve been busy painting Democrats — in Miami for two nights of debate that will wrap up this evening — as a bunch of socialists.

 

 

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