U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders will swear in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio when the mayor is inaugurated Monday for his second and final term, City Hall announced Wednesday.
Between 1,000 and 1,500 people are expected to attend the ceremony, scheduled for noon in the plaza in front of City Hall, de Blasio’s spokeswoman Jaclyn Rothenberg said.
Sanders’ wife, Jane Sanders, will be on the dais, as will de Blasio’s wife, Chirlane McCray.
“Senator Sanders is a proud son of Brooklyn and a dedicated advocate for working people. Senator Sanders’ progressive leadership has helped reshape the American political debate in favor of men and women long left out of our city and nation’s prosperity,” de Blasio said in a statement. “Chirlane and I couldn’t be more excited to have Senator Sanders and Jane Sanders with us as we work to make New York a stronger, fairer city for everyone.”
A Sanders spokesman did not immediately return an email seeking comment about the appearance.
Four years ago, former President Bill Clinton swore in de Blasio, with Hillary Clinton nearby.
De Blasio, now 56, went on to endorse Hillary Clinton for president in 2016, months after much of the Democratic establishment had signed on with her.
De Blasio, a Democrat whose focus on income inequality mirrors Sanders’, reportedly came close to endorsing Sanders but opted to go with Clinton.
De Blasio, whose first-term candidacy cast New York City as a Dickensian “Tale of Two Cities,” has sought to be a national leader on progressivism; he’s traveled to speak on the subject to places like Iowa and Europe and tried to host a 2016 presidential forum — to which Sanders RSVP’d, according to emails released Tuesdays — but that did not materialize.
Two other citywide elected officials will be sworn in for their second and final terms: Public Advocate Letitia James and Comptroller Scott Stringer.
Speakers at the ceremony are also expected to include “representatives from the Christian, Jewish, and Islamic religions,” including Sister Aisha Al Adawiya, Founder of Women In Islam, Inc.; Rev. Michael Walrond; Rabbi Michael Miller, chief executive of Jewish Community Relations Council of New York; and, Father Eric Cruz, Pastor/Catholic Charities Bronx Regional Coordinator, according to the mayor’s office.
James, in an interview, said her inaugural address would focus on homelessness, housing, what she called the vanishing middle class and challenging Trump, who beat James’ preferred candidate, Clinton. James promised brevity, in recognition of the cold temperature.
“I’m going to be brief,” James said, “and as a result of that, I’ll get a huge applause.”
Rothenberg said the inauguration would be a “scaled-down version of prior inaugurations.” The event budget is estimated at about $200,000 and will be covered with private funding, Rothenberg said.