It looks like the New York City mayor’s very expensive plan to create a new stable for carriage horses in Central Park to solve the non-existent problem of carriage-horse abuse has collapsed. Virtually no one supported the proposal, not the carriage drivers who would have seen the number of their horses dwindle from 225 to 90, and who originally signed on to the deal in the municipal version of a shotgun marriage; not the pedicab drivers who would have been banished from areas of Central Park below 85th Street; not the City Council members who thought de Blasio did a “piss poor” job crafting the proposal. No one, that is, except for the animal rights activists who bankrolled attacks on de Blasio’s principal opponent in the mayoral Democratic primary in 2013.
It’s been a tough week for de Blasio, who got his comeuppance for trying to establish himself as a Democratic Party kingmaker by being sent on a lonely walk through the Iowan hinterland. The collapse of the carriage-horse deal also drowned out a proposal unveiled by his administration earlier today that was of actual interest to New Yorkers: a streetcar to connect the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens. And finally, the month of February always reminds people of that time he (probably) killed a groundhog.