De Blasio meets 3 candidates for top police job
Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio has met with at least three contenders for police commissioner, he said Wednesday.
They are Bill Bratton, who served as the NYPD's top cop under former Mayor Rudy Giuliani between 1994 and 1996; Philip Banks III, now chief of department under Commissioner Ray Kelly; and the first deputy commissioner, Rafael Pineiro, the NYPD's highest-ranking Hispanic.
De Blasio made a cornerstone of his campaign ridding the NYPD's controversial stop-and-frisk policy of what he considers racial discrimination and replacing Kelly. He said Wednesday that he wants a police commissioner who can implement his vision of "bringing community and police back together."
De Blasio said he'd had a "very productive meeting" with Bratton but declined to elaborate further. He said he's also met with Banks and Pineiro.
The three contenders did not return messages seeking comment, but Bratton told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" earlier Wednesday that he'd talked with de Blasio about returning to his old job.
"If asked," Bratton said, "I would be very interested in coming back into that position."
He added: "Never know, it might happen."
Banks and Pineiro declined to comment.
Also Wednesday, de Blasio announced the appointment of 60 transition advisers -- religious leaders, activists, corporate officials, actors, parents and more -- to help him choose the agency leaders of his administration.
"It is a group of people who share a progressive vision," de Blasio said.
They include Tim Armstrong, the chairman and chief executive of AOL; Kevin Ryan, the Internet entrepreneur; Cynthia Nixon, the actress of "Sex and the City" fame; and Harold Ickes, the White House deputy chief of staff in the Clinton administration.
De Blasio made the announcement inside a two-week-old, 15,000-square-foot tent in lower Manhattan, home of the "Talking Transition" project. The tent, sponsored by a coalition of nonprofit groups and not run by the incoming administration, allows the public to submit ideas for the new mayor via sticky notes and electronic terminals.