New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio was not invited to take part in New York’s Columbus Day event and festivities, according to a report from the New York Post.
Angelo Vivolo, chairman of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, confirmed that de Blasio was not invited to the event, which took the place of the Columbus Day parade, which was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“No, he wasn’t invited,” said Vivolo, chairman of the foundation that hosted the virtual “2020 Columbus Citizens Foundation Italian Heritage & Achievement Special” event, which aired on WABC-TV. “Tight schedule. No ulterior motive.”
Formerly, de Blasio had been invited to march in the Columbus Day parades.
According to the Post:
Tensions between members of the Columbus Citizens Foundation and de Blasio and his wife, Chirlane McCray, exploded last year after City Hall failed to include Mother Frances Cabrini — the beloved Italian American patron saint of immigrants — on its list of famous women to be honored with statues as part of the first lady’s ‘She Built NYC’ program.
Last Columbus Day, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that a statue honoring Mother Cabrini would be erected using state funds. Cuomo was named the grand marshall of this year’s Columbus Day event.
The statue of Cabrini was unveiled in Battery Park City during a press conference, which launched the event and featured a performance by Andrea Bocelli and appearances by Joe Piscopo and Dr. Anthony Fauci.
After he was not invited, a spokesperson for de Blasio claimed, “he would not have been able to attend” the event anyways.
“The Mayor is out of state visiting family today so he would not have been able to attend,” said de Blasio spokesman Bill Neidhardt.