The sun was shining, the crowds were cheering and the politicians waving as New York City’s annual Pride March was held Sunday. Once a small protest on the political fringe, the Pride March is now decidedly in the mainstream of New York politics. This year’s edition featured many elected officials and candidates, including Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Senator Chuck Schumer and mayoral candidates Paul Massey and Bo Dietl.
It was a regular Cuomo/de Blasio affair, with the two leading Democrats arriving separately and taking pains to avoid each other. Governor Cuomo delayed his arrival until the March began, rolling up 34th Street in his SUV to the parade route just as his marching contingent came down Fifth Avenue to 34th. Cuomo then held a brief press Q&A as his contingent stood still, blocking the parade route for Mayor de Blasio and the rest of the March.
Mayoral candidates Paul Massey and Bo Dietl marched, Massey with the Stonewall Veterans and Dietl in his own contingent. The Stonewall Veterans were at the head of the March and Massey was therefor off early. I saw him pass by, but didn’t accompany him along the route. I caught up with Dietl after walking a bit with Cuomo and then de Blasio. Dietl was by far the most energetic politician, trotting and dancing between brief but intense campaign pitch soliloquies to the watching crowds. (Video of Dietl in action is available here.) He was well-received, with spectators listening as he made his pitch and many joining the “Bo, Bo, Bo” chants led by his campaign staff. Republican mayoral candidate Nicole Malliotakis did not march – her schedule listed her as appearing at the March starting point to “greet marchers & participating groups” an hour before the March started, but I didn’t spot her.