It was Christmas of 2010, and as a ferocious blizzard was bearing down on the city, Mayor Michael Bloomberg jetted off to his vacation home in Bermuda.
He rushed back the next day, but the city's botched cleanup effort prompted a public uproar — and led to a proposal from one City Councilman that the mayor be forced to disclose his out-of-town travel.
Three years later, history repeated itself when a train derailment killed four people while Bloomberg was on a golf course in Bermuda. But throughout his time in office, Bloomberg never revealed details about his personal travel, insisting he could run the city from anywhere.
“I was in constant communications with my commissioners, who are there to do the job,” he said in 2013 following the derailment.
Fast forward six years and Mayor Bill de Blasio was campaigning for president in Waterloo, Iowa, when a blackout hit Manhattan, earning him scorn from the public and the media alike. But he, too, made no apologies.
“You have to take charge wherever you are,” he told reporters after returning to the city. “And I did that.”
Mayor Eric Adams, meanwhile, spent three days in Los Angeles this week, one more than planned. After speaking at the Milken Institute Global Conference Wednesday, his red-eye flight was canceled, forcing him to cancel several events in the city Thursday, including a rally for an extension of mayoral control of schools.
Upon his return, the mayor went to Coney Island Hospital to honor an NYPD officer who’d been stabbed in the line of duty.
Elected officials have shied from criticizing Adams.
“I get a lot of questions about the mayor and his movements and you know, his behavior. And I still say I can’t speak for the mayor, I can only speak for the way that we move in the Council,” City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams said Thursday.
“The mayor’s schedule is what it is,” she added. “And we continue to move forward in the budget process.”
But some noted the irony in the mayor’s comments earlier this week, when he defended the length of his appearance at the Inner Circle charity show put on by the City Hall press corps last weekend.
“I was there for three hours. I'm nowhere for three hours,” he said, responding to criticism he skipped the portion of the show that lampooned him. “This is a big city with big issues and big problems, and I'm a mayor that has to respond to them.”