A fierce critic of Mayor de Blasio slammed Hizzoner on Wednesday for taking a call from crooked businessman Jona Rechnitz, who successfully lobbied to have a retired NYPD official named to a plum post in the administration.
“It just seems that he consistently lies to the press, he lies to the public and does the bidding of the special interests and acts like it’s transparency,” said Bradley Tusk, ex-Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s campaign manager and founder of NYC Deserves Better.
The Post exclusively reported Wednesday that Rechnitz, a real-estate developer who is a cooperating witness in the NYPD corruption scandal, made a call from the office of then-Chief of Department Philip Banks to de Blasio, asking that Banks’ predecessor, Joseph Esposito, get a $220,000-a-year gig as head of the city’s Office of Emergency Management.
The widely respected Esposito has not commented on the call, but on Wednesday again denied that he ever knew Rechnitz.
“It hurts that someone would think I needed help to get a job here in the city,” he said on WCBS/Channel 2.
Esposito added, “People who are cooperating will many times say what they think the prosecutors want to hear, and this may be the case in this situation.”
De Blasio, through a spokesman, has refused to confirm details of the call. Tusk said: “Of course he took the call. Otherwise they would deny it, they know that the US attorney knows that he took the call. Rechnitz is cooperating.”
Tusk’s group also mocked the mayor in a statement.
“Apparently, Mayor de Blasio will personally take calls from his constituents even those he doesn’t know.
He claimed to have no relationship with Jona Rechnitz and yet the mayor immediately took his call,” it said.