New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said earlier Friday that Brookfield Office Properties—the real-estate firm that owns Zuccotti Park, considered a home-base for protesters—made the decision not to clear them out after the company was “inundated” with threatening calls from elected city officials.
The mayor said during his weekly commentary on New York’s WOR Radio that he didn’t know which officials allegedly made the threats, but that the company decided to work out some form of a negotiated settlement with protesters in the coming days.
Bloomberg added that while he lacked first-hand knowledge of the conversations, he was told the officials generally threatened to “make life more difficult” for the real-estate company.
So Bloombo is just accusing random, unnamed elected officials of brazen thuggery: “Sure is a nice real estate company you’ve got there. Be a shame if something happened to it.” He’s provided zero evidence for this claim, and at the same time, it’s impossible to refute, even if every single politician in the city from the Bronx to the Battery signed a sworn affidavit attesting they did no such thing.
Brookfield, though, isn’t confirming His Bloominess’s version of events:
“At the request of a number of local political leaders, Brookfield Properties has deferred the cleaning of Zuccotti Park for a short period of time,” the company said in a statement.
Note their choice of wording: “request” not “threats.” Of course, I wouldn’t expect them to use any language outside the confines of normal public relations-ese, but the fact is that Brookfield simply isn’t backing up Bloomberg—and indeed, Greg Sargent tweets that the firm plans to remain completely mum:
In fact, Brookfield spox just confirmed: No comment at all on Mayor’s claim that elected officials threatened company over
Ball’s back in Bloombo’s court now. Will he back down from these accusations, or will he double down?