New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is defending a weekend comedy routine with Hillary Clinton that went south.
Saturday, the two did a skit during the Inner Circle dinner. The event brings journalists and politicians into the same room to rub shoulders, and the writers mock the elected officials.
During the dinner, de Blasio was joined on stage by Clinton and actor Leslie Odom Jr., from the Broadway hit “Hamilton.” The sketch included a rapping de Blasio who endorsed Clinton and introduced her as his “homegirl.” That led Clinton to quip, “It took you long enough.” The mayor replied that he was on “running on CP time,” or “colored people’s time.” The joke plays to the stereotype that black people are always late.
The joke was met with groans and a loud “no.” Odom said he didn’t like jokes like that, prompting Clinton to respond, “Cautious politician time.”
Monday, de Blasio told CNN that his critics were “missing the point.” The mayor — whose wife is black — said the point of his joke was to turn a negative stereotype on its head.
“Every actor involved including Hillary Clinton and Leslie Odom Jr. thought it was a joke on a different convention,” he said. “That was the whole idea of it.”
“It was clearly a staged show. It was a scripted show and the whole idea was to do the counter-intuitive and say, ‘Cautious politician time,'” the mayor said.
The New York Daily News ripped the two for the joke.
Twitter users said Clinton’s participation in the joke is yet another campaign misstep with the black community.